Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

September 28, 2007 10:41 ET

AAFC: Biofuels, Organic Sectors in P.E.I. to Benefit from New Government Funding

FREETOWN, PRINCE EDWARD ISLAND--(Marketwire - Sept. 28, 2007) - The Honourable Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board, today announced almost $460,000 in federal funding for three projects aimed at boosting alternative fuel production and organic agriculture in Prince Edward Island.

"Biofuels and organic agriculture represent two exciting growth areas for Canadian farmers," said Minister Ritz. "These innovative projects are also good for the environment and Canada's New Government is proud to partner with groups and individuals in P.E.I. who are committed to making the industry greener and more profitable."

The funding includes $189,450 under the Biofuels Opportunities for Producers Initiative (BOPI) for a pilot project by the Island Grain and Protein Council to evaluate the use of locally processed canola oil as a bio-fuel for farm machinery. The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency is providing $145,000 towards the purchase of equipment to press canola to produce oil and meal, creating demand for locally grown canola for renewable fuel and livestock and poultry feed.

The P.E.I. Department of Agriculture has recognized the potential opportunity for expansion in the biofuels sector, and has committed $130,000 to the canola biofuel project.

"Identifying new uses for existing products and new ways to produce those products is part of our strategy to diversify the agriculture industry and create new opportunities for producers," said Prince Edward Island Minister of Environment, Energy and Forestry, George Webster. "We will continue to work with all sectors of the industry to make it more profitable and sustainable."

Canada's New Government is also investing $124,900 in the region's organic sector under the Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food (ACAAF) Program, including $90,000 to support the growth of an organic grain sector in the Maritimes and $34,900 to provide the dairy industry in P.E.I. with specialized education and training to deal with the unique health requirements of cattle raised for organic milk production.

"These projects demonstrate that there is no single way to tackle environmental challenges, that we can make a difference from a variety of directions that can also create economic opportunities," said Elmer MacDonald, Chair of the PEI ADAPT Council, which delivers the ACAAF and BOPI programs in the province.

For more information on ACAAF and BOPI, please visit www.agr.gc.ca/acaaf and www.agr.gc.ca/bopi. To learn more about the PEI ADAPT Council, please call 902-368-2005.


BACKGROUNDER

The Biofuels Opportunities for Producers Initiative (BOPI) is a two-year $20 million commitment by Canada's New Government designed to provide farmers and rural communities with opportunities to participate in, and benefit from, increased Canadian biofuel production.

The Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food Program (ACAAF) is a five-year $240 million initiative to assist and encourage the agriculture and food industry to work cooperatively in finding constructive solutions that respond to current and emerging issues.

Under these two programs, the Government of Canada has announced three projects in Prince Edward Island that will contribute to a healthier environment in the province while creating new market opportunities. These projects included:

- $189,450 under BOPI to the Island Grain and Protein Council to evaluate the vehicle performance, economics and logistics of using bio-fuel made from canola in farm machinery. Atlantic Oilseeds Processors in Kinkora, P.E.I., will crush and process the oil at its plant. The Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency is providing $145,000 towards the purchase of equipment for the plant to cold-press locally grown canola to produce oil and meal, creating demand for an expanded canola sector on P.E.I. The P.E.I. Department of Agriculture is contributing $130,000 to the project. The BOPI funds are delivered by the PEI ADAPT Council who administers ACAAF in P.E.I.

- $90,000 under ACAAF to the Atlantic Canadian Organic Regional Network (ACORN) to support the growth of the organic grains sector in the Maritimes. ACORN will partner with the Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada in Truro Nova Scotia, PEI Certified Organic Producers Cooperative, Speerville Flour Mill, Gaia Tree Systems Feed Mill and the Atlantic Grains Council to create a network of producers and processors to support the initiative. The fund will be used to hire a coordinator, to determine the needs of the organic sector, and to support meetings and training events. ACAAF funding is being delivered for this project through the adaptation councils in all three Maritime provinces that deliver the program - the PEI ADAPT Council, Agri-Futures Nova Scotia and the New Brunswick Agriculture Council Inc.

- $34,900 under ACAAF to Amalgamated Dairies Ltd (ADL). ADL will partner with Purity Dairy and the Organic Dairy Club to provide the dairy industry with training to deal with the unique requirements of dairy cattle used for organic milk production. A series of quarterly teaching seminars will be held with producers and veterinarians over the next two years. ACAAF funding is administered by the PEI ADAPT Council.

Contact Information

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Media Relations
    613-759-7972
    1-866-345-7972
    or
    PEI Adapt Council
    Phil Ferraro
    902-368-2005
    or
    Minister Ritz's Office
    Todd MacKay
    613-759-1059