Flower, veg research focus of new federal funding

February 21, 2013
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Feb. 21, 2013, Niagara Falls — New federal funding will help Ontario’s fruit, flower and vegetable growers benefit from new technology and marketing strategies.

The announcement was made today at the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Convention in Niagara Falls today.

Representing Ag Minister Gerry Ritz  was St. Catharines MP Rick Dykstra. “Our government is committed to helping Ontario’s horticulturalists remain competitive in global markets and continue to improve their yields,” said Dykstra.

Three horticultural organizations are receiving $579,000 under the Canadian Agricultural  Adaptation Program (CAAP) to tackle issues that have been identified by growers as obstacles to  reaching higher levels of productivity.

• The Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers’ Association will be able to grow new species of  tomato, pepper, petunia and impatiens that are of economic importance to Ontario using  genomics technology, thanks to an investment of $308,000.

"Developing new crop varieties to  meet evolving consumer demands will help Ontario's fruit and vegetable farmers remain  competitive," says Ray Duc, Chair of the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers' Association. "This  crop genetic technology will help position our industry to adapt more quickly to changes in the  marketplace and contribute to the long term sustainability of our sector."

• The Ontario Apple Growers is receiving an investment of $137,000 for a study to better understand evolving consumer preferences, in order to better market their produce.

• An investment of $133,000 investment for Seeds of Diversity Canada will help producers control seed-borne disease on tomato farms through ultra-violet radiation, replacing treatments which have been found to be either too expensive or result in enormous losses of seed.
 
The funding is provided through the Canadian Agricultural  Adaptation Program (CAAP), a five-year (2009-2014), $163-million initiative that helps the  Canadian agricultural sector adapt and remain competitive. In Ontario, the regional component of  this program is delivered by the Agricultural Adaptation Council.

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