The Government of Canada invests in innovation to advance Canada's field crops

News release

January 23, 2019 – St. Isidore, Ontario – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

The crop sector is a key contributor to Canada's economy, representing $25 billion in farm gate receipts, $21 billion in exports and supporting thousands of jobs across the country while expanding markets for the sector's safe, high-quality products.

Today, Francis Drouin, Member of parliament (MP) for Glengarry—Prescott—Russell was at the Chicken Little Farm in St. Isidore where he reaffirmed the Government of Canada's support for the sector through an investment in the soybean research cluster. Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, previously announced this investment on January 15, 2019 at the annual CropSphere event in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

MP Drouin highlighted the Government of Canada's investment of up to $5.4 million to the Canadian Field Crop Research Alliance under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership's AgriScience Program (Clusters). This research investment, which includes an additional $3 million from industry, will help soybean crops become more resilient and productive, increase the geographic range for growing crops and benefit the environment.

MP Drouin also announced an additional investment of $4.1 million over five years to the Canadian Field Crop Research Alliance (CFCRA), funded under the AgriScience Program (Projects). This additional funding supports two national projects, one on oat and one on corn.

The oat project will develop new oat varieties, enhance breeding efforts and recommend new agronomic practices to help improve productivity, stability of yields, consistency, and quality.

The corn project will develop germplasm that is more disease resistant and adaptable to cooler growing regions. The project will also focus on new nitrogen strategies that will help enhance productivity and environmental performance for farmers across the country. 


"Our government has set a target of $75 billion in agri-food exports by 2025, and supporting the growth of the field crops sector through investments in cutting edge research is key to getting us there. We are proud to partner with industry to ensure research tackles the tough issues and delivers new tools to help growers compete and meet the growing demand for their products at home and abroad for years to come."

- Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

"Innovation in the Canadian agricultural sector has helped make our country a leader in producing safe, high quality products. I am pleased to be here today to highlight these investments that will enhance the sustainability of the field crops sector, while delivering economic benefits and create good job opportunities in Ontario and all of Canada.”

- Francis Drouin, Member of parliament for Glengarry—Prescott—Russell

"Demand for food continues to increase as the global population rises. The CFCRA welcomes the investment by the Canadian government in important areas of research for agriculture and the food industry. The funding for the soybean cluster, oat project, and corn project, will lead to more resilient, productive, and high quality soybean and oat varieties as well as new corn inbreds for Canadian farmers, and will improve best practices for sustainable crop production that will keep our grain-based foods and feed healthy, of high quality, and increase yields to meet global demand."

- Salah Zoghlami, President, Canadian Field Crop Research Alliance

Quick facts

  • In 2016, the farm gate value of Canadian soybean, oats and corn was $5.39 billion, with over $900 million of sales in Ontario.

  • The Canadian Agricultural Partnership is a five-year, $3 billion investment by federal, provincial and territorial governments to strengthen the agriculture and agri-food sector. 

  • The Partnership includes programs and activities to enhance the competitiveness of the sector through research, science and innovation. Through the AgriScience Program, a five-year, $338 million initiative, the government is supporting leading edge discovery and applied science, and innovation driven by industry research priorities.

  • The Canadian Field Crop Research Alliance (CFCRA) is a not-for-profit entity founded in 2010 with an interest in advancing the genetic capacity of field crops in Canada, particularly barley, corn, oats, soybeans and wheat. The CFCRA is a national collaboration comprised of provincial producer organizations and industry partners, including: Atlantic Grains Council; Producteurs de grains du Quebec; Grain Farmers of Ontario; Manitoba Corn Growers Association; Manitoba Pulse & Soybean Growers; Saskatchewan Pulse Growers; Prairie Oat Growers Association; SeCan; and FP Genetics.

Associated links


Katie Hawkins
Director of Communications
Office of the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay

Media Relations
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Ottawa, Ontario
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