Minister MacAulay announces new investment in mental health support for producers

News release

May 6, 2024 – Ottawa, Ontario – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

To mark Mental Health Week, the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, announced an investment of up to $1.08 million for the Canadian Centre for Agricultural Wellbeing (CCAW) through the AgriCompetitiveness Program, an initiative under the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership.

This project funds five activities aimed at supporting the mental health of Canadian farmers. This includes supports for mental health literacy education for agriculture educators across the country, the development of a mental health toolkit to support the sector in case of catastrophic events, and aims to help industry further develop capacity throughout the sector and facilitate the sharing and expansion of national farm mental health strategies and resources.

The CCAW will also develop Canada’s first evidence-based agriculture literacy training program in collaboration with the Rural Physicians Society of Canada in order to deliver the training to rural physicians who interact with Canadian farmers and organize two national conferences that will enable mental health information sharing with stakeholders from across the sector.


“I know firsthand the challenges that come with life on the farm. You work around the clock, 365 days a year, facing unique demands and significant pressure. With everything else our producers have to manage, it can be hard to check in on yourself and prioritize your mental health. This new funding for the Canadian Centre for Agricultural Wellbeing will help more farmers gain access to the mental health support they need, with services and tools that are tailored to them.”

- The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

"The CCAW seeks to work with grass roots, community-based organizations across the country, to provide meaningful support of Canadian agricultural wellbeing."

- Briana Hagen Chief Executive Officer and Lead Scientist for The Canadian Centre for Agricultural Wellbeing

Quick facts

  • The Canadian Centre for Agricultural Wellbeing (CCAW) is a collaboration between researchers and mental health professionals looking to expand access to counselling and develop new resources for people in agriculture.

  • The CCAW virtually brings together national and global leaders in the agricultural mental health field to conduct cutting-edge research to develop evidence-based community-informed programming and education to address challenges related to well-being among Canadian farmers.

  • More agricultural-specific resources can also be found on Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Mental health in agriculture webpage.

  • The AgriCompetitiveness Program is a $25.7-million program under the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership supports sector-led activities that identify industry best practices and build the capacity of the sector, advance farm business management, farm safety information and tools, as well as activities which raise agricultural awareness.

Associated links


For media:

Francis Chechile
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Media Relations
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Ottawa, Ontario
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