Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

January 18, 2008 11:22 ET

Government of Canada Announces More Than $860,000 to Help Farmers Profit in the Biofuels, Bioproducts Market

EDMUNDSTON, NEW BRUNSWICK--(Marketwire - Jan. 18, 2008) - The Government of Canada is investing $861,000 in three projects to help New Brunswick farmers advance opportunities to turn agricultural crops and by-products into renewable fuel and biodegradable plastic and packaging. The announcement was made today by the Honourable Christian Paradis, Secretary of State for Agriculture, on behalf of the Honourable Gerry Ritz, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board, and on behalf of the Honourable Peter MacKay, Minister of National Defence and Minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.

"The demand for greener products is uncovering new value in agriculture and opening new market opportunities, both in crops and even in what was once considered worthless waste," said Mr. Paradis. "With these projects, we are continuing to help New Brunswickers advance economic opportunities that also help the environment."

The funding announced today includes:

- $500,000 from the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency's (ACOA) Business Development Program to BIO-D Energie Inc. for the purchase and retrofitting of an existing facility to establish a biodiesel processing plant facility in Clair, New Brunswick. Eligible costs for the project include the purchase of the necessary equipment and improvements to the existing mill.

- $300,000 under Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's (AAFC) Biofuels Opportunities for Producers Initiative (BOPI) for BIO-D Energie Inc. to further refine their production technology in order to produce biodiesel from canola and soy to meet North American standards.

- $61,000 for the Centre of Excellence in Agriculture and Biotechnological Sciences in Grand Falls through AAFC's Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food (ACAAF) program to determine the most cost-efficient technology to transform starch from waste potatoes and grain into lactic acid that can be used in biodegradable plastic and other more environmentally-friendly packaging.

"Agriculture is an important sector in Northwestern New Brunswick and we are pleased to support innovative initiatives like these projects," said Robert Theriault, a director on the New Brunswick Agricultural Council which delivers ACAAF and BOPI. "These Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada programs are designed to be flexible and responsive and are administered by industry leaders who understand regional needs in New Brunswick."

For more information on ACAAF and BOPI, please visit www.agr.gc.ca/acaaf and www.agr.gc.ca/bopi.

BACKGROUNDER

Facility establishment, renovation and purchase of equipment

BIO-D Energie Inc., received a $500,000 repayable contribution under ACOA's Business Development Program (BDP) to help the company establish a biodiesel production facility. With this support, the company has purchased and renovated an existing mill in Clair, New Brunswick, as well purchased necessary processing equipment.

Setting the stage for large-scale biodisesel production

BIO-D Energie Inc. also received $300,000 under Biofuels Opportunities for Producers Initiative (BOPI) to further refine its production technology in order to produce biodiesel from canola and soy to meet North American standards. The total cost of the project is $633,000.

Under the project, the company will develop the tools, techniques and knowledge needed to produce biodiesel, creating another market for farmers growing canola and soy.

The company is a partnership that includes potato producer Andre Long, Belisle Solution Nutrition and biofuels producer Biocardel.

The plant is currently using crushed canola and soy as meal for animal feed and for oil, which it has been refining and using in its fleet of 50 trucks in New Brunswick, Quebec and Ontario.

Lactic acid - a new generation of packaging material

The Centre for Excellence in Agriculture and Biotechnological Sciences (CESAB), located in Grand-Falls, NB, received $61,000 under Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food (ACAAF) to evaluate two techniques for turning starch in a mix of waste potatoes and grain into lactic acid that can be used in biodegradable plastic and packaging.

Lactic acid is obtained by processing natural plant sugars. It has been described as a new generation of material - biodegradable polymers. The production of lactic acid uses between 20 and 50 per cent less fossil fuel and releases a lower amount of greenhouse gas than comparable petroleum-based plastic.

The pilot will identify the most cost-efficient way to produce lactic acid in a potato/grain mix, creating an opportunity for farmers to get some profit from their waste potatoes.

The total cost of the project is $209,000.

ACAAF and BOPI

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's ACAAF program is a five-year, $240 million program aimed at positioning Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector at the leading edge to seize new opportunities.

The BOPI, an initiative under ACAAF, is a $20 million program designed to help farmers and rural communities undertake feasibility and other studies necessary to create and expand biofuels production capacity.

In New Brunswick, these programs are delivered by the industry-led group New Brunswick Agriculture Council Inc.

Contact Information

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Media Relations
    613-759-7972
    1-866-345-7972
    or
    ACOA NB Fredericton
    Ann Kenney
    Senior Communications Officer
    506-452-3687
    or
    Office of the Secretary of State
    Mark Quinlan
    Director of Communications
    613-759-1107
    or
    New Brunswick Agricultural Council
    Monique Mills
    Executive Director
    506-450-3891