BEAVERLODGE, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - Jan. 22, 2014) - Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
On behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, Parliamentary Secretary Pierre Lemieux and Member of Parliament Chris Warkentin (Peace River) today announced an investment of over $923,000 to the Peace Region Forage Seed Association (PRFSA), which will improve seed production and quality, as well as the economic and environmental sustainability of crops within Canada. These improvements will deliver more value to producers and help meet the growing demand for forage seed both domestically and internationally.
Under this project, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researchers will collaborate with industry on a number of activities to help the sector. Research will be done on how incorporating forage seed production within annual crop rotations can increase value for producers, evaluating the seed yield potential of forage and turf grass varieties in Western Canada, and examining ways to increase the quality of grass and legume seed crops in Canada.
Today's investment is made through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canadas AgriInnovation Program, a five-year, up to $698-million initiative under Growing Forward 2. The Programs industry-led research and development stream supports pre-commercialization research, development and knowledge transfer leading to innovative agriculture, agri-food, and agri-based practices, processes, and products.
- The PRFSA was formed in 1995 to develop the forage seed industry in the Peace region and to prioritize issues and exchange information among members and industry.
- There are 326,000 acres of land in forage seed production in Canada.
- Canadian exports of forage seeds average about $280 million annually, with the United States and Europe among the key export destinations.
"Research and innovation are vital to the growth and sustainability of the forage seed sector. This investment through Growing Forward 2 will increase the competitiveness of the industry by improving agronomic practices that result in better returns for producers and the sector."
- Parliamentary Secretary Pierre Lemieux
"Our Governments top priority remains the economy and creating jobs. I am pleased that this project with the Peace River Forage Seed Association will help the industry open new sales opportunities in Canada and in markets around the world."
- MP Chris Warkentin (Peace River)
"This investment in research makes a big difference. We are grateful for the support, which will help us to improve turf and forage seed crops grown in Canada."
- Reuben Loewen, President of the PRFSA
Growing Forward 2 (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada)
AgriInnovation Program (Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada)
Peace Region Forage Seed Association