September 19, 2017 – Saskatoon, SK– Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
The agriculture sector is a cornerstone of the Canadian economy and the Government of Canada is challenging it to increase agri-food exports to $75 billion annually by 2025 in an effort to create jobs for Canadians across the country. Canada’s wheat industry plays an important role in this sector and by identifying and focusing innovation on high-impact areas of research it will be in a better position to help Canada increase productivity and competitiveness.
Today, on behalf of the entire value chain, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and Cereals Canada released the 2017 Canadian Wheat Research Priorities report. Wheat Research Priorities were developed as a national collaboration of farmers, federal and provincial governments, public research institutions, exporters and processors in an effort led by Cereals Canada and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. The report succinctly lays out the priority areas of research that public, private and producer groups should focus on for the next five years in order to ensure this $7 billion wheat industry remains strong and grows in the future.
This is the first time the industry has come together to establish such research priorities. They are as follows: improving wheat yield and reliability, increasing sustainability, improving food safety for example by reducing mycotoxins, and be able to respond to consumer needs by developing a feedback mechanism from purchasers to researchers.
The report is a roadmap for innovation and success. No matter where in the country, or the value-chain organisations are, they will be able to know where efforts and funding should be focused in order to achieve greater success for Canada’s important wheat sector. Ultimately a strong wheat sector means greater opportunities for Canadians. The process will be ongoing, allowing the value chain to measure work against the established goals and refine objectives for success.
- Canada is one of the world’s top five wheat exporters with an average of $7B exported annually.
- Canada produces an average of 30M tonnes of wheat each year and is the worlds’ largest producer of high-protein milling wheat.
- Innovation plays a significant role in the agriculture industry and Canada’s economy. It is estimated that every dollar invested in wheat research delivers a net return to producers of twenty dollars.
- On July 21st, 2017, federal, provincial and territorial ministers reached agreement on the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a 5-year, $3 billion agreement which will come into effect April 1, 2018. This agreement will strengthen the agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector, ensuring continued innovation, growth and prosperity and together, with federal investments in science and innovation, trade, the environment and value-added industries, help our agricultural sector reach its full potential.
“This report exemplifies the vision of the Government of Canada - collaborative, focused on innovation and clearly outlines the steps needed to drive the wheat sector to be an economic powerhouse for our country and make good jobs for Canadians.”
- Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
“Agriculture and Agri-food Canada’s science and innovation play a fundamental role in helping industry respond to evolving funding needs, changing producer and consumer demands, and overall sustainability and competitiveness of the sector. This collaborative work helps focus our efforts to the areas that matter most.”
- Dr. Gilles Saindon, Associate Assistant Deputy Minister, Agriculture and Agri-food Canada
“Research and technology development is a competitive advantage for Canadian agriculture. The development of a national vision shared by the entire value chain – from the field to customers – is a critically important tool that will help us maintain and develop this advantage.”
- Cam Dahl, President of Cereals Canada
- Canada Agricultural Partnership
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The Office of the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
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