Canada Invests Nearly $10M in Sustainable Horticulture

Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, looks at plants growing inside.

(Credit: CNW Group/Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada)

by | Oct 12, 2023

This article is included in these additional categories:

Canada is investing $9.8 million in the horticulture industry to boost research in the environment, build resilience, and ensure Canadians have access to high-quality products. 

The investment, which is a partnership with the Fruit and Vegetable Growers of Canada (FVGC) through the AgriScience Program — Clusters Component, a program under the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership, was touted by Lawrence MacAulay, minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, who traveled to Abbotsford, British Columbia, to meet with the BC Federation of Agriculture and visit local food producers. 

The funding is for Cluster 4, led by the FVGC, and will include an additional $7.7 million in contributions from industry, for a total investment of $17.5 million.

Funding for food growers

The program provides funding and support for pre-commercial science activities and research to benefit the agriculture and agri-food sector, and Canadians. The Clusters Component part of the program supports projects that target industry, government, and academia through partnerships to address national themes and horizontal issues.

The investment will fund research, support the development of new varieties, disease management, labor cost-savings, climate resilience, and greener pesticides and energy. The focus will be on apples, berries, field vegetables, greenhouse vegetables, and potatoes.

Overall, the goal of the investment is to reduce dependence on synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, advance innovative technologies, and create new disease control technology.

“Agriculture creates jobs and a sense of pride in communities right across Canada,” MacAulay said in a statement. “The Fruit and Vegetable Growers of Canada have demonstrated continued leadership over the past 100 years, and we will continue to support Canada’s fruit and vegetable growers, while building a sustainable sector for the future.”

FVGH is a non-profit, national association that represents growers across the country involved in the production of over 120 different types of crops on over 14,000 farms. The group had farm cash receipts of $5.7 billion in 2020. 

Priorities to Enhance Resilient Agriculture

The AgriScience Program has a handful of priority areas, including climate change and environment, economic growth and development, and sector resilience and societal changes. The Canadian government said its goal with the investment is to help organizations meet increased demand for grown-in-Canada products.

Projects and funding in the program are subject to negotiation of a contribution agreement, as well as a collaborative research and development agreement.

“We are incredibly excited to renew our collaboration with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada through the approval of the Canadian AgriScience Cluster for Horticulture 4,” Marcus Janzen, vice president, Fruit and Vegetable Growers of Canada, said in a statement. “This significant investment of $17.5 million, including AAFC’s substantial $9.8 million contribution, will be a catalyst for research spanning five commodity groups. This program will bolster our efforts in areas such as climate change mitigation, economic development, and sector resilience. Cluster 4 is not merely funding; it’s a commitment to equipping Canadian farmers with the innovative tools they need to produce world-class fruits and vegetables and ensure our sector’s sustainability.”

Additional articles you will be interested in.

Stay Informed

Get E+E Leader Articles delivered via Newsletter right to your inbox!

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Share This