Media Release – Harper Government Invests to Improve the Competitiveness of Canadian Flaxseed
October 16, 2014 – Winnipeg, Manitoba – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Member of Parliament Joyce Bateman (Winnipeg South Centre), on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, today announced an investment of $3 million to the Flax Council of Canada to improve the genetic performance and agronomics of flax, an important oilseed crop for Canadian producers and processors.
This investment will support the continued research and development of new flax varieties through the use of the Rapid Development Trait System, a regulated non-genetically modified conversion system which can produce new traits in flax. In addition, agronomic best management practices will be developed to help farmers achieve higher yields of flax.
Under this project, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada researchers will collaborate with industry on a number of activities to help the sector. These activities will include research into disease management, seed quality and genetic resistance to heat and drought, contributing to increased competitiveness for flax producers.
- Established in 1986, the Flax Council of Canada is a national organization which promotes Canadian flax and flax products for nutritional and industrial uses.
- Canada is the largest single producer of flax in the world.
- Flax is derived from a blue-flowered plant crop grown mainly in the cool, northern climate of the western Canadian prairies.
- This investment is made through the Industry-led Research and Development stream of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s AgriInnovation Program, a five-year, up to $698- million program under Growing Forward 2.
“As the largest producer and exporter of flax in the world, our Government understands the importance of supporting innovative projects such as these in Canada. Creating new flax varieties and improving agronomics will increase producers’ profitability and allow processors and exporters to continue selling a high-quality product around the world.”
– Member of Parliament Joyce Bateman
“Feed application and export markets continue to expand and investments toward advanced agronomic research projects are vital in keeping pace with the growing demand for flaxseed.”
– Don Kerr, President, Flax Council of Canada
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Gerry Ritz
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
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