Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

October 03, 2012 14:17 ET

Harper Government Helps Canadian Horticulture Plant Seeds for Success

LINCOLN, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Oct. 3, 2012) - Canadian horticultural growers will develop innovative projects to increase their competitiveness with the support of the Harper Government. MP Dean Allison (Niagara West-Glanbrook), on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, announced an investment to the Canadian Ornamental Horticulture Alliance to increase innovation and boost profits for horticultural growers.

"Ontario Agriculture Week is a great time to recognize the important contributions of the agriculture sector that keep our economy growing," said MP Allison. "The ongoing partnership we have with Vineland is an excellent example of how industry leadership can benefit the sector and help increase farmers' profitability."

Vineland Research and Innovation Centre will receive $50,000 to assist the Canadian Ornamental Horticulture Alliance in developing an innovation strategy for its members in the flowers, nursery, and landscape sectors. The strategy will prioritize research needs and accelerate the transfer of innovation from the lab to the marketplace. A strategic plan for research and innovation will help producers access these new and growing markets with innovations that are targeted to their needs.

A second project with Vineland will invest $65,000 to help develop an innovative grape-drying process that concentrates flavours and will help Canadian growers and processors tap into a new premium wine category in Canada. Producers will benefit from increased domestic sales and export possibilities.

The horticulture sector accounts for 15 per cent of Canada's total farm cash receipts-more than $6 billion a year. More than 110,000 people are employed in the ornamental horticulture sector, generating nearly 50 per cent of total horticultural farm cash receipts.

"We are delighted to have excellent working relationships with industry stakeholders in both projects," said Vineland Chief Executive Officer Dr. Jim Brandle. "Specifically, the Canadian Ornamental Horticulture Alliance, which is the national voice for the ornamental sector, is driving the innovation strategy, and Angels Gate Winery and Rennie Estate Winery are leading new technologies for appassimento-style premium wine production. Both projects will identify new opportunities and conduct the research necessary to underpin success."

These investments build on a previous investment of $1.5 million in the Ornamental Horticulture Cluster Initiative, administered by Vineland, that brought together partners across the sector to increase profitability through improved efficiencies and new market opportunities.

Last month, federal, provincial, and territorial ministers of agriculture reached an agreement on the five-year Growing Forward 2 policy framework. The new agreement will continue to drive innovation and long-term growth in Canada. Governments have agreed to invest more than $3 billion over five years in innovation, competitiveness, and market development. For more information on Growing Forward 2, please visit www.agr.gc.ca/growingforward2.

These projects are funded under the Agricultural Innovation Program (AIP), a $50-million initiative announced as part of Canada's Economic Action Plan 2011. The AIP is part of the Government of Canada's commitment to help Canadian producers benefit from cutting-edge science and technology. The AIP boosts the development and commercialization of innovative new products, technologies, and processes for the agricultural sector. For more information about the AIP and other Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada programs, please visit www.agr.gc.ca.

These investments to Vineland are conditional on the signing of contribution agreements.

Contact Information

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

    Jeff English
    Press Secretary
    Office of the Honourable Gerry Ritz
    613-773-1059