Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

June 15, 2009 17:22 ET

Minister Blackburn Works With Canadian Food Processing Industry to Strenghten Its Competitiveness

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - June 15, 2009) - It was at the invitation of the Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn, Minister of National Revenue and Minister of State (Agriculture), that a food processing value chain roundtable was held today in order to discuss the future of this important Canadian industry.

In participating in the roundtable meeting, Minister Blackburn highlighted the Government of Canada's commitment to create a favourable environment for the development and growth of Canadian food processing industry, despite the challenges of the current world economic crisis. "I intend to exert strong leadership so that our programs evolve to address the increasing needs of the food processors," he said during his opening remarks earlier in the morning.

Following the roundtable meeting, Minister Blackburn declared that he was very pleased with the results of the talks and the recommendations made by the industry. Ongoing negotiations with many trade partners, coordination with various Departments, and guidelines on labelling (Product of Canada) are issues participants have raised several times.

The topics discussed also included the economic growth of the industry, innovation, market access and regulatory reforms. "Our talks won't end today," said Minister Blackburn. "We're heading back to the drawing board and, in the weeks and months to come, we will propose concrete and workable solutions to meet the challenges identified during our discussion with the industry today."

In addition, Minister Blackburn also reiterated that Canadian food processing companies can here and now benefit from a variety of government programs offered under the Growing Forward federal-provincial-territorial framework agreement.

Organized with the logistical and financial support of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, the value chain roundtables are initiatives led by Canadian agriculture and agri-food industries. Their goal is to enhance the competitiveness of Canadian food products on both domestic and international markets.

Contact Information

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    Media Relations
    The Office of the Honourable Jean-Pierre Blackburn
    Sophie Doucet
    Press Secretary