THAMESVILLE, ON (September 13, 2010) – Grain Farmers of Ontario is excited about a new partnership that will provide $5.7 million for research in breeding and genetics in Eastern Canada.
The partnership is made possible through the Developing Innovative Agri-Products (DIAP) initiative from the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) Growing Forward framework. The funding will be used to support 18 public breeding and genetics programs throughout Eastern Canada – from Manitoba to Prince Edward Island.
Covering six field crops – winter wheat, corn, soybeans, spring wheat, oats and barley – these projects will be managed by the newly formed Canadian Field Crops Research Alliance (CFCFRA). The alliance is a collaboration of seven organizations including Grain Farmers of Ontario (GFO), SeCan, Fédération des producteurs de cultures du Québec, Manitoba Corn Growers Association, Manitoba Pulse Growers Association, PepsiCo Canada and the Atlantic Grains Council.
“We’re very excited about the possibilities that this new funding presents for breeding,” says Crosby Devitt, Manager of Market Development and Research at GFO and chair of the new alliance. “The projects will focus on advancing production efficiencies and insect and disease resistance as well as targeting new markets in the food, industrial and feed markets, both domestically and internationally,” continues Devitt.
DIAP is part of the larger Growing Canadian Agri-Innovations Program, a federally funded, $158 million five-year program that promotes industry-led innovation initiatives.
Of the $5.7 million, AAFC is contributing $4 million and the partners of the alliance are contributing the remaining $1.7 million. GFO is directly contributing $628,000.
“GFO has been working hard on this initiative over the past year and a half,” says Henry Van Ankum, Vice Chair of GFO. “As developing new varieties is integral to maintain a strong grain industry, we are very excited to see it come to fruition.”
Grain Farmers of Ontario
Grain Farmers of Ontario is the province’s largest commodity organization, representing Ontario’s 28,000 corn, soybean and wheat farmers. The crops they grow cover 6 million acres of farm land across the province, generate over $2.5 billion in farm gate receipts, result in over $9 billion in economic output and are responsible for over 40,000 jobs in the province.