May 24, 2002
FREDERICTON (CNB) -- The governments of Canada and New Brunswick are providing $1.2 million to support agriculture innovation and help ensure New Brunswick's agriculture and agri-food sector remains competitive for years to come.
The Government of Canada will provide $720,000 and the Government of New Brunswick $480,000 for the Canada-New Brunswick Research and Innovation Program. Funding for the program falls under the current Canada/New Brunswick Framework Agreement on Agricultural Risk Management.
Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Rodney Weston. (150 dpi image) Video- Quicktime Movie (1) (2) Microsoft ASF (1) (2), Audio - Quicktime (1) (2) (3) - (more audio/video)
The funding was officially announced today by New Brunswick Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture Minister Rodney Weston and Fredericton MP Andy Scott, on behalf of federal Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Lyle Vanclief.
"The Canada-New Brunswick Research and Innovation Program will help increase innovation and industry self-reliance in New Brunswick and help ensure the future success of the industry in the province," Scott said.
"We hope to build upon the close working relationship between the agri-food and research communities to ensure that limited funds are spent in an optimal fashion," Weston said. "The program will encourage new approaches and help the sector compete successfully in the knowledge-based economy."
Projects eligible for funding under the program will include those which focus on specific opportunities available to New Brunswick's agriculture and agri-food sector.
Examples of projects that may be considered include research and innovation activities leading to the development of conventional foods with enhanced nutrition, novel and functional foods (omega three eggs, soy products), nutraceuticals, bio-fuels, bio-medical products, biomaterials and environmental protection and bioremediation.
Weston stressed the program fits well with Greater Opportunity: New Brunswick's Prosperity Plan.
"Successful economies are ones that encourage innovation by investing in research and development, technology adoption, and commercialization," Weston said. "Right here in New Brunswick, the digital economy is already transforming the way business, government and consumers relate to each other. Innovation makes us more productive and more competitive, and that means jobs and growth. This certainly applies for the agri-food sector."
"Research and innovation are key elements of the proposed Agricultural Policy Framework agreed to in principle by Minister Vanclief and his provincial and territorial colleagues," Scott said. "This policy is aimed at putting Canada first in the world by responding to consumer demands for safe, high-quality food produced in an environmentally sustainable way."
The Canada-New Brunswick Research and Innovation Program supports the proposed policy by encouraging research and the development of new technologies that cover every aspect of food and non-food production system, changing the way Canadians grow, process, preserve, transport, distribute and even shop for food.
MEDIA CONTACT: Marie-Josée Groulx, director of communications, Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture, 506-444-4218; Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, 613-759-7972.