While attending the Council of Dairy Farmers of Quebec’s annual general meeting, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau announced the federal government is providing $376,668 to the Cheese Expertise Centre (CEC). This money will go into two projects to keep Canadian cheese makers “competitive and innovative,” according to Bibeau.
“With the assistance provided by AAFC, the Cheese Expertise Centre will strengthen its expertise in the dairy sector for Canada as a whole by reducing reliance on foreign expertise,” says Pascal-André Brisson, chairman of the board of directors of CEC. “Our organization will continue its efforts of a highly competitive calibre in support of the Canadian dairy sector. In addition, this is a golden opportunity for the Canadian cheese industry to move toward promising technologies and thus ensure that we are competitive.”
To date, $17.4 million has been used under the $100-million Dairy Processing Investment Fund, for a wide array of projects in cheese, milk drying, yogurt, cream and butter projects, according to Agriculture and Agri-food Canada.
A database of standardized production processes for artisanal cheese makers across Canada will be created from this funding along with a plan to develop a series of technical cheese making training seminars.