Ottawa and Québec provide $500,000 in financial assistance for Laval University

News release

May 4, 2022 – Quebec City, Quebec - Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, and André Lamontagne, Quebec Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, jointly announced financial assistance of $500,000 to fund a research project by the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Laval University on the efficient use of electricity for heating and lighting in greenhouses. The funding is being provided through the Quebec Agri-Food Innovation Partnership Program under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.

The completion of this research project, whose total cost is estimated at $1,145,370, is part of the Government of Quebec’s 2020-2025 Greenhouse Growth Strategy, whose goal is to double greenhouse area by 2025.

Further to Hydro-Québec’s adoption of a new electricity rate reserved for the greenhouse sector, this project aims to propose concrete ways to use electricity efficiently. The project manager intends to promote efficient management of heating and artificial lighting while optimizing productivity, reducing the risk of plant diseases and taking into account the particularities of this sector, including load shedding and power demand. More specifically, the objectives are to better understand electrical loads, maximize microclimates of plants, and develop strategies for the use of artificial lighting and heating that are most conducive to plant growth and disease prevention.

Quotes

“By enabling the production of local, fresh and varied products in a wide range of environments and over an extended season, greenhouse production is part of the solutions to the challenges of climate change and food security. This Laval University research project will also help reduce production costs, which will contribute to increase the competitiveness and resilience of the agricultural sector over the long term.”

- The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Québec sees greenhouse crops as a powerful driver for improving its food self-sufficiency. The 2020-2025 Greenhouse Growth Strategy, which I unveiled in November 2020, has the goal of doubling the areas of fruits and vegetables grown in greenhouses by 2025. Today, our government is proud to partner with the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Laval University for a research project that will contribute to the success of this strategy by helping the greenhouse sector better manage its energy consumption and reduce its energy costs, as well as decrease its heating and greenhouse gas emissions. Such innovations are essential to improve the competitiveness of companies in a context of sustainable development.”

- André Lamontagne, Quebec Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Minister responsible for the Chaudière-Appalaches region and Minister responsible for the Centre-du-Québec region

“The pandemic has renewed the population and the governments’ desire to move towards greater food self-sufficiency in Quebec. Greenhouse production is therefore set to play an increasingly important role in this social project. I am proud to be able to make this announcement in which our government recognizes Laval University’s role as a leader in research and innovation in the biofood sector.”

- Joëlle Boutin, Member of the National Assembly for Jean-Talon

Quick facts

  • Principal investigator: Louis Gosselin, Full Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering of the Faculty of Science and Engineering of Laval University.

  • Project title: “How to maximize the productivity, crop quality and competitiveness of Quebec’s greenhouses by optimizing the management and use of electrical energy for heating and artificial lighting? This will be achieved through measurement, modelling, greenhouse testing, microclimates and development of strategies.”

  • For Quebec, the Partnership’s budget envelope for strategic cost-shared initiatives amounts to $293 million for the duration of the Partnership (2018-2023): 60% of this funding comes from the Government of Canada and 40% from the Government of Quebec.

Associated links

Contacts

Marianne Dandurand
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
marianne.dandurand@agr.gc.ca
343-541-9229

Alexandra Houde
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food of Quebec
418-380-2525

Media Relations
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Ottawa, Ontario
1-866-345-7972
aafc.mediarelations-relationsmedias.aac@agr.gc.ca
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