Multi-million dollar project launched to bump canola protein content

Corteva Agriscience, Bunge, Botaneco, and Protein Industries Canada have announced a canola breeding project worth more than $27 million. The canola hybrid program will be the first of its kind, as it is the first commercial breeding project explicitly focused on protein quality improvement of the oilseed.

Higher protein canola meal will result in new, diversified, higher-value markets, creating economic benefits across the entire value-chain, says Protein Industries Canada.

The joint investment is part of the Government of Canada’s Supercluster Initiative. Corteva Agriscience, Bunge, and Botaneco will spend $14.05 million, while Protein Industries Canada will provide $13.6 million through the Protein Supercluster funding.

L to R: Bill Greuel, Bryce Eger, Alanna Koch, David Dzisiak, Ryan Law

“We’re pleased to announce our significant investment to revolutionize Canadian canola, which will open new, higher-value markets and create economic benefits across the entire canola value chain and agriculture industry,” says Bryce Eger, President of Corteva Agriscience Canada. “In addition to our focus on important agronomic input traits for farmers, high protein seed genetics will transform Canadian canola to be both a high-value oil and a high-value meal crop.”

Listen to more from Bryce Eger at the announcement (story continues below)

“Canola is one of Canada’s most important crops, and this project has the potential to take it to the next level,” CEO of Protein Industries Canada Bill Greuel said. “By investing in breeding to improve protein and reduce fibre, we will increase the value of Canadian canola – especially the meal for use in livestock feed – resulting in higher prices for the meal, which is traditionally sold at a discount.”

Announced at Corteva’s research and development facility located at Saskatoon, Sask., this project fills a gap with a new commercial breeding program focused on quality improvement versus traditional development efforts that have been focused on yield and traits like pod shatter and disease resistance.

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