Canada’s Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz and Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Development Minister Ron Kostyshyn have announced governments will provide a combined $20 million over five years toward projects under a new Grain Innovation Hub in Manitoba. This amount will be supplemented by additional funding from industry partners expected to bring the total investment to over $33 million. The announcement was held today at Cigi in the pasta and extrusion facility.
The Grain Innovation Hub is intended to solidify Manitoba’s place as a national leader in grain research, production and processing. Governments will work with stakeholders throughout the grain industry to identify and pursue suitable projects that elevate grain-based opportunities to a global scale.
“Canada continues to be a global leader in agricultural innovation,” said Minister Ritz. “This investment will help drive the economy through research, development, commercialization, and collaboration right along the value chain, leading to increase productivity and profitability for our producers.”
Minister Kostyshyn said, “Our province has a deep and historical connection to the grain industry, which continues to drive our economy from the farm gate to the urban landscape. The Grain Innovation Hub is an excellent opportunity to strengthen our grain industry, anticipate challenges and take advantage of new opportunities.”
The Grain Innovation Hub will bring together partners from across the grain industry to support a number of initial priority areas, including the Manitoba Corn Development Initiative, the Functional Food and Feed Opportunities Project and targeted agri-food research and development and strategic investments in equipment, human resources and commercial development done in partnership with Manitoba’s grain industry stakeholders.
“Congratulations to the Government of Canada and the Government of Manitoba for taking this important step to renew and build upon Manitoba’s status as a ‘go to’ centre of innovation for the domestic and international grain industry,” said Earl Geddes, Cigi CEO. “We see Cigi as an integral part of this new innovation hub through our work with, and on behalf of, farmers, industry and customers to develop products using the quality crops grown in Western Canada.”
Cam Dahl, president of Cereals Canada and Doug Chorney, president of Keystone Agricultural Producers also spoke at the announcement. A number of industry representatives and stakeholders were also in attendance.