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Investment for Agri-Food Initiatives in Quebec

26 August 2013

CANADA - A new initiative Growing Forward 2 to invest in the agri-food sector in Quebec was launched last week.

The bilateral agreement to implement Growing Forward 2 contains programmes totalling $293 million in support for Quebec’s agriculture and agri-food sector.

"Our Government remains focused on creating jobs, growth and long-term prosperity for Quebec’s agricultural and agri-food industry," said Gerry Ritz, federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

"Growing Forward 2 provides flexible, innovative programming for Quebec’s hard-working producers to ensure they have the tools necessary to remain competitive and expand into new markets."

"Quebec’s agricultural producers and food processors are among the best in the world." said Maxime Bernier, Minister of State (Small Business and Tourism, and Agriculture).

"The Growing Forward 2 bilateral agreement recognises that increased innovation, productivity and competitiveness are key drivers of Quebec’s agriculture and agri-food sector."

Growing Forward 2 reflects the renewed commitment by the federal, provincial and territorial governments to ensure the productivity and profitability of Canada’s vast agricultural sector.

By giving priority to innovation, competitiveness and market development, the programmes of Growing Forward 2 are designed to help the industry reach its full potential.

"The Growing Forward 2 agreement we have concluded has the necessary flexibility to allow Quebec to develop its own unique programmes to support its agricultural and agri-food sector," said François Gendron, Deputy Premier of Quebec and Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

Quebec will use the amounts committed under the agreement to implement eight major types of programmes for the agricultural and food processing sectors.

These programmes are focused on the following areas: agri-food research and innovation; the environment; support for businesses; diversification and development of nearby markets; support for sector development projects; traceability; adaptation of businesses; and assurance systems relating to food safety, biosecurity, traceability and animal welfare.

Close to C$27 million in federal funding will go towards the Prime-Vert program announced by Quebec on 10 May.

The two governments will also provide close to C$90 million in support for agriculture and agri-food businesses and for the delivery of consulting services to promote their improved performance.

The details of the other programmes will be released at a later date.

In addition to investments in strategic initiatives, Growing Forward 2 maintains the existing business risk management (BRM) programmes.

The federal and Quebec governments will continue to offer ongoing funding for a suite of BRM programs, namely AgriStability, AgriInvest, AgriInsurance and AgriRecovery, to ensure that producers are protected from market fluctuations and natural disasters. These programs will be managed, as before, by La Financière agricole du Québec.

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