As one tour comes to an end, another one begins.
Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Lawrence MacAulay has ended his cross-Canada tour dubbed “Growing Canadian Agriculture.”
For the duration of the second part of the tour, MacAulay went from west to east meeting with various farmers, processors, and industry leaders. He also took part in a handful of rural agriculture events.
Several announcements were made during the course of the trip including more than $70 million in new agricultural research clusters under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP) to key agriculture sectors including organic, canola, pulse, agronomy, beef, pork and grape and wine.
More funding was also announced for even more research within agriculture. Approximately 75 scientists and science professionals will be hired from another $70 million investment who will dive more into significant environmental changes that are taking place across Canada.
Next stop, European Union
MacAulay will now spend this week traveling to Spain, Belgium, and Italy. There he will remain focused on promoting Canadian agriculture and its part with the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).
“Free trade agreements like CETA encourage investment, open new markets and help our hard-working farmers and food processors compete around the world,” MacAulay says in a news release. “I’m looking forward to traveling to the European Union (EU) to meet with industry and governments to advance market access opportunities for Canadian agriculture.”
As the EU is the world’s largest import market for agriculture and agri-food, this trip by Canada’s minister of agriculture and agri-food is hoping to give farmers, processors and exporters increased access to more than half a billion consumers.
According to the CETA agreement, 94 per cent of agricultural tariffs are duty-free and almost 96 percent of tariffs for fish and seafood products are duty-free, giving Canadian exporters an advantage over competitors in countries that do not have a free trade agreement with the EU.