Source: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Today at the Calgary Stampede, Francis Drouin, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, announced an investment of more than $12 million on behalf of the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau to the Canadian Cattle Association under the AgriScience Program – Clusters Component. The Beef Cattle Research Council, a division of the Canadian Cattle Association, will administer the Beef and Forage Cluster.
The investment aims to drive the growth of Canada’s beef industry through research, innovation and technology transfer, while improving their environmental footprint.
The 23 projects to be funded focus on three AgriScience program priorities: Climate Change and Environment, Economic Growth and Development, and Sector Resilience and Societal Challenges. Research activities include reducing methane emissions through feeding strategies, breeding forages that are more productive and profitable, and developing technologies for faster response to emerging diseases.
The goals of these funded activities contribute to the Government of Canada’s climate change mitigation and industry resilience priorities, while supporting the Government’s GHG reduction targets.
“Across the country, beef farmers and ranchers are incorporating new methods into their day-to-day routines to meet the global demand for Canadian beef. Today’s investment will help the sector continue to deliver results and maintain their solid reputation, while continuing to contribute to our environmental goals.”
– The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
“The Government of Canada recognizes the importance of Canadian beef. Today’s announcement will contribute to the continued success of the industry, while keeping it strong and resilient. The results from these innovation, research and technology activities will transform into real results on farms.”
– Francis Drouin, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
“Beef producers across Canada continually strive to maintain and improve our animal health and welfare practices, food safety standards and environmental stewardship. We are eager to utilize the outcomes of Canada’s Beef and Forage AgriScience Cluster to continue to responsibly deliver superior products and preserve land and livelihood that we pass on to the next generation.
– Craig Lehr, Chair of The Beef Cattle Research Council and Alberta beef producer
- The beef and cattle industry is one of the largest in Canadian agriculture, with 11 million cattle and calves on 72,275 farms and ranches on January 1, 2022.
- Canada is one of the largest exporters of livestock and red meat in the world, exporting approximately 50% of Canadian beef and cattle production each year.
- In 2022, cattle and calf exports were valued at $1.4 billion, and beef exports were valued at $4.68 billion.
- The industry contributes approximately $21.8 billion annually to Canada’s GDP while supporting 347,000 jobs directly and indirectly.
- According to the Beef Cattle Research Council (BCRC) the GHG emissions of Canadian beef production have a total footprint of 11.04 kg CO2 equivalent, representing 2.4% of Canada’s overall emissions, less than half the world’s average.
- Also, according to the BCRC, the land used for beef production and managed by Canadian farmers and ranchers helps to sequester over 1.5 billion tonnes of carbon in Canada.
- The AgriScience Program, under the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Sustainable CAP), aims to accelerate innovation by providing funding and support for pre-commercial science activities as well as research that benefits the agriculture and agri-food industry and Canadians.
- The Clusters Component, under the AgriScience Program, supports projects intended to mobilize industry, government and academia through partnerships, and addresses prioritized national themes and issues of general interest.
- Projects and final funding are subject to negotiation of a Collaborative Research and Development Agreement.
- The Canadian Cattle Association is a national federation funded by cattle producers and led by a producer-elected board of directors, which works to improve market access and address issues that concern Canada’s beef producers.
- The Beef Cattle Research Council, an operating division of the Canadian Cattle Association, determines research and development priorities for the beef cattle industry and administrates the research funding allocation of the producer-paid Canadian Beef Cattle Check-Off to fund beef, cattle and forage research and technology transfer.