Barley industry receives $8 million dollar Agri-Innovation Program grant

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Lacombe, Alberta (July 9, 2013) – Agriculture Canada announced today that $8 million dollars has been granted to the Alberta Barley Commission to fund its Barley Research Cluster projects.

This funding will cover 28 projects to meet relevant industry priorities for feed, malt and food barley.

“This is a game changer for the future of barley,” said ABC Chairman Matt Sawyer. “With an investment like this, barley producers will reap the rewards of innovation for years to come.”

According to Sawyer, the Barley National Research Cluster projects aim to increase the competitiveness of the Canadian barley sector by focusing on market-driven factors that stimulate the demand for barley, while incorporating scientific advances to reduce the expenses and risks that producers face when growing barley.

“We’re eager to work with farmers, for farmers,” said ABC Vice-Chairman and Barley Council of Canada (BCC) Director Trevor Petersen. “This is just the beginning—once these projects start to gain traction, the sky’s the limit for barley farmers.”

The Alberta Barley Commission will work closely with the BCC on managing these projects. Both groups are committed to accelerating the development of all classes of barley varieties through the adoption of best practices in technology, agronomic methods, crop management, breeding and genetic techniques.

“The BCC is looking forward to collaborating with industry to expand barley’s potential,” said BCC Chairman Brian Otto. “We are now on the road to making Canada’s barley industry a global leader.”

ABC’s Research Manager Garson Law will manage the Barley National Research Cluster projects. The Commission is currently waiting on further funding details from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC).

The cluster is supported under the AgriInnovation Program, a five-year initiative of up to $698 million that is designed to serve as a catalyst for innovation by supporting research, ! development, commercialization, and adoption of innovative products, technologies, and services. The terms of this investment are subject to the signing of contribution and collaboration agreements.

To track progress on projects, please visit www.albertabarley.com.

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The Alberta Barley Commission is a not-for-profit organization directed, funded and controlled by the province’s barley farmers. The Commission co-ordinates and sponsors research, market development, technology transfer and policy development on behalf of its producers.!

For more information, contact:

Anne-Marie Bruzga Luchak
Communications Manager
(403) 919-1024
aluchak@albertabarley.com

Trevor Bacque
Communications Coordinator
(403) 219-6266
(403) 479-8738
tbaqcue@albertabarley.com

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