Canada - Federal ag research budget: new approaches are needed to fund research
Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada
April 17, 2012
“Western Grains Research Foundation (WGRF) respects the fiscal constraints faced by the Federal Government and is ready to work with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC)” says Dave Sefton, Chair of WGRF. “Producers want to continue to use check-off funds to work with private industry to develop new approaches to funding crop research. For over a century, AAFC and provincial governments have been key funders of agriculture research, particularly wheat and barley variety development. Now is the time for producers and industry to find ways to increase cereal research investments to levels competitive with other crops and other countries” says Sefton.
“AAFC management is doing their best to work within budget constraints to continue their commitments in wheat and barley variety development in the short term,” says Garth Patterson, WGRF Executive Director. AAFC’s long term plan is to focus on wheat germplasm development and not wheat variety development. “This is an opportunity for WGRF to partner with other producer organizations and industry to develop a new approach for wheat variety development,” says Patterson.
“The closure of the Cereal Research Centre in Winnipeg is unfortunate in a time of need for increased research capacity” says Sefton. “AAFC management has assured WGRF that the cereal programming will continue in Morden and Brandon. WGRF remains committed to its $4 million dollar contribution towards a Centre of Grains Excellence in Winnipeg.”
“We do understand that the reduction in the Federal agriculture research budget will have an impact in Western Canada,” says Patterson. We encourage AAFC management to release budget details as soon as possible to enable WGRF and others to work with AAFC to develop solutions.”
More news from: WGRF (Western Grains Research Foundation)
Published: April 17, 2012
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