Japanese customers learning about all aspects of Canadian durum wheat

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WINNIPEG – Eight representatives from Japanese mills and food processing companies are attending the Japan-Canada Durum Wheat Program at Cigi (Canadian International Grains Institute) in Winnipeg this week. The program, which runs to September 6, includes presentations, in-depth practical sessions, and tours focused on Canadian durum wheat.

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Japanese customers are spending the week with Cigi and industry representatives learning about Canada Western Amber Durum wheat.

“The program is designed to ensure that Japanese customers understand the systems and processes underlying their Canadian durum purchases,” says Dave Burrows, Cigi Vice President of Client Relations and Communications, adding the program is a follow-up to an investigative mission to Japan last April where Cigi visited major milling companies.

“We aim to build a strong Japanese understanding of the functional properties of Canada Western Amber Durum (CWAD) and the role that new varieties are playing in this class,” he says. “The technical aspects of this program also offer us an opportunity to improve our evaluation of Japanese pasta products in order to better promote and position CWAD in this important market.”

In addition to sessions given by Cigi and the Canadian Grain Commission that include CWAD quality characteristics, grading, marketing, analysis, milling, end-use processing, and evaluation of pasta and noodles, the group will tour Western Canada. The participants will visit durum plots at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, an inland terminal elevator, and grain farm near Swift Current, Saskatchewan. They will also travel to Vancouver, British Columbia where they will tour a terminal elevator, the Canadian Grain Commission, and the Port of Vancouver.

Burrows says that the participants moving beyond the Cigi classroom and facilities to see first-hand where Canadian durum wheat originates and how it moves into the system is essential, and also provides them with an opportunity to engage directly with industry representatives across the region.

“An ongoing dialogue between customers and industry helps promote Canadian durum brand loyalty,” he says. “It creates a forum for discussion and customer learning that assists them in making important business decisions and helps maintain them as buyers of Canadian durum.”

Cigi is an independent market development institute created in 1972. More than 39,000 people representing grain, oilseed, pulse, and special crops industries from 115 countries have participated in Cigi programs and seminars. Cigi’s mission is to create a global advantage for Canadian field crops through the delivery of technical expertise, support, and customized training to the domestic industry and customers around the world. Cigi is funded by farmers, the Government of Canada (AAFC), and industry partners.

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For more information contact:

Heather Johnson
Director, Communications and Branding
Cigi (Canadian International Grains Institute)
Tel. (204) 983-7678
Email: hjohnson@cigi.ca