Federal government invests $8 million in organic sector

The investment will help fund research to help growers and a streamlined review process for organic standards.
Top Crop Manager
Monday, 27 August 2018 | Ottawa
By Top Crop Manager
Lawrence MacAulay, minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, announced a federal investment of up to $8.3 million to the Organic Federation of Canada, under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, AgriScience Clusters.

The investment will help fund research to help growers and a streamlined review process for organic standards. 

This research investment, which includes an additional $4.4 million in contributions from industry, will help the organic sector enhance productivity through better soil health and fertility management, advance crop breeding research, improve pest management and evaluate the environmental impacts of organic farm practices.

Minister MacAulay also announced an additional investment of $292,555 to the Organic Federation of Canada under the federal Canadian Agricultural Adaptation program. The funding will assist industry in streamlining the review process of the Canadian Organic Standards and improve the Canadian organic industry's competitiveness and international market access. This funding builds upon the $250,000 announced by the minister on January 26, towards the Canadian General Standards Board to complete the 2020 review of the Canadian Organic Standards.

The organic acreage in Canada grew by five per cent per year between 2006 and 2015. Retail sales of organic food products have grown, on average, by double digits over the past decade, with current sales estimated at $5.4 billion across Canada.

In 2016, 4,289 farms reported organic farming in Canada with the total acreage of organically farmed land at 2,433,602 acres. Green and red lentils and red spring wheat account for approximately two thirds of Canadian organic exports, according to Canada Organic Trade Association's 2017 market report. 

Today's announcement is part of Minister MacAulay's 'Growing Canadian Agriculture' tour, where he will meet with farmers, processors and industry leaders, as well as participate in rural agricultural events across the country, to hear ideas on how to capture growth opportunities for the sector.

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