Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

February 21, 2012 13:33 ET

Government of Canada Helps the Environment and Farmers' Bottom Lines

MINIOTA, MANITOBA--(Marketwire - Feb. 21, 2012) - Producers will have the opportunity to increase their profits through green agriculture technologies thanks to a partnership among industry, academia, and the Government of Canada. Member of Parliament Robert Sopuck (Dauphin-Swan River-Marquette), on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, announced today an investment of $160,000 to the Upper Assiniboine River Conservation District to study how agroforestry systems can increase farmers' productivity while mitigating their environmental impact.

"Our government's top priority remains the economy, and Canada's agriculture industry has an important role to play in keeping our economy strong," said Member of Parliament Sopuck. "Farmers have always been great stewards of their land, and this investment will enable researchers to develop new tools and practices to help farmers grow their businesses while continuing to protect our environment."

The Upper Assiniboine River Conservation District will use the funding to study how agroforestry-the integrated approach of planting trees and shrubs on farms-can reduce the costs associated with livestock production and mitigate greenhouse gas emissions. The project will evaluate various beneficial management practices on the farm to see if they can be easily adopted by the farming community. Results of this research have the potential to reduce production costs, improve energy savings, and enhance nutrient cycling and biodiversity while simultaneously protecting the environment.

"Making the business case for properly placed rows of trees is pretty easy; what we lack is the recording and reporting tools used in business to guide adoption," said Ryan Canart, manager of the Upper Assiniboine River Conservation District. "Over the next four years, Upper Assiniboine and the Rural Development Institute will be engaging grain and livestock farmers in a conversation about the value of trees in the agricultural landscape, as well as the tools and practices needed to achieve the numerous benefits of agroforestry in the modern agricultural setting."

Funding for this project is through the Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program (AGGP), a five-year, $27-million initiative that focuses on the development of on-farm greenhouse gas mitigation technologies. The AGGP will provide funding to various partners across Canada to investigate innovative mechanisms, tools, and approaches that provide real solutions for the agriculture sector.

The AGGP represents Canada's initial contribution to the Global Research Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases, an international network of more than 30 member countries that will coordinate and increase agricultural research on greenhouse gas mitigation and make new mitigation technologies and beneficial management practices available to farmers. For more information about the Global Research Alliance, visit www.globalresearchalliance.org/.

Contact Information

  • Media Relations
    Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
    Ottawa, Ontario
    613-773-7972
    1-866-345-7972

    Meagan Murdoch
    Director of Communications
    The Office of the Honourable Gerry Ritz
    613-773-1059