Canadians rely on a strong agriculture industry and innovation helps ensure its success. Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Lawrence MacAulay reports that the Government of Canada has invested $35.3 million for infrastructure improvements at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s (AAFC) Swift Current Research and Development Centre.
“We welcome this investment from the federal government,” says Brad Wall, premier of Saskatchewan. “Our government has made research a priority as part of our innovation agenda, and such investments in our agriculture research sector will help Saskatchewan and Canada continue not only to feed the world, but continue to be a world leader in agriculture research.”
The centre is being renovated and new laboratories are being built, which are used extensively to support AAFC’s wheat breeding program and other research on forages and cereals. Researchers at the centre continue to play a key role in developing high-performance, high-quality wheat varieties. Today, those varieties are grown on about 50 per cent of the wheat acreage in Canada.
The new space will offer modern laboratories and more energy efficient infrastructure; the new and renovated portions of the building will be LEED Silver certified — a mark of energy efficiency.
“The Government of Canada recognizes the importance of research and innovation to agriculture and to our economy, MacAulay says. “Improvements to these facilities will help deliver new technologies to producers, which creates jobs, grows the middle class and supports Canadian farmers.”
Science and innovation play an important role in making Canada one of the world’s top producers and exporters of agricultural products. Funding is part of AAFC’s rolling five-year investment plan, which identifies infrastructure priorities and needed improvements to facilities.