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AAFC: $134 Million Investment by Canada’s New Government to Boost Commercialisation of Agri-Based Innovation

by NationTalk on January 23, 2007770 Views

WINNIPEG, MANITOBA–(Jan. 23, 2007) – The Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board, today announced a major investment of $134 million towards the Agri-Opportunities Program, an Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) program that will focus on the commercialization of new agri-based products, processes and services.

“This is just one of the steps Canada’s New Government is taking to fulfill its commitment to invest in the development of new opportunities for the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector,” said Minister Strahl. “Agri-Opportunities will help increase the demand for primary agricultural products – grains, oilseeds and other traditional and non-traditional products – for the benefit both of farmers and of the entire agricultural sector.”The Agri-Opportunities program will help good ideas get from the drawing board and into the market. Funding will be provided for projects that can be expected to increase market opportunities for the Canadian agricultural industry across the value chain and generate demand for primary agricultural products.

Individuals, producers, agri-businesses, cooperatives, non-profit and for-profit organizations and academia are eligible to apply for the funding, which will be delivered through contribution agreements. Maximum contribution per project and per applicant will be capped at $10 million over a five-year period.

Agri-Opportunities will be delivered nationally by AAFC in all provinces and territories.

BACKGROUND

Agri-Opportunities is a $134 million five-year program that provides funds to accelerate the commercialization of new agricultural products, processes or services. Funding is provided for projects that can be expected to increase market opportunities for the Canadian agricultural industry across the value chain and increase demand for primary agricultural products, such as grains, oilseeds and other traditional and non-traditional products.

To be eligible for funding, projects must meet the following basic eligibility criteria:

- be focused on agri-food, agriculture and bioproducts that are not commercially produced or available in Canada;

- be ready to commercialize, meaning a prototype has been developed, a market has been defined, a business plan has been written and intellectual property issues have been finalized; and

- be conducted in Canada and benefit the Canadian agricultural industry.

The program provides a maximum contribution of $10 million per project and per recipient, over the life of the program (ending on March 31, 2011). Funding provided to for-profit organizations will be in the form of repayable contributions.

Eligible applicants include aboriginal groups, agencies and corporations, Canadian agri-businesses, co-operatives, foreign companies (that have a Canadian subsidiary), individuals, non-governmental organizations and corporations, non-profit and for profit business entities, academic institutions.

For more information on the Agri-Opportunities Program, send an e-mail to Agri-opps@agr.gc.ca or call 1-866-367-8506.

CONTACT INFORMATION

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Ottawa, Ontario
Media Relations
613-759-7972
1-866-345-7972

or

Minister Strahl’s office
Jeff Howard
Press Secretary
613-759-1059

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