Canadian gov't invests over CAD$476k in tender fruits, fresh grape research
The Canadian Government is investing CAD$476,908 in tender fruits and fresh grape research, with funding for the Ontario Tender Fruit Growers and Fresh Grape Growers to improve the quality and availability of the categories for consumers.
Specifically, the research project aims to improve Canadian apricots, peaches, nectarines, plums, pears and grapes.
According to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, it plans to do this by extending the growing season and storability.
The project will also study black knot disease in plums and develop new tender fruit and fresh grape varieties.
Honorable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, notes the implications the studies' findings could have for the industry.
“Scientific innovation is key to the Ontario tender fruit and fresh grape sector increasing the sustainability, competitiveness and profitability of their industry sector," she commented.
"The Government of Canada is pleased to announce this federal investment, as it means increased opportunities for producers, packers, processors and retailers.”
Partnerships to create tender fruits and fresh grape growth
The scientists leading the research will share their findings with the tree fruit and fresh grape sectors, says the entity.
This could have great significance on the thriving industries.
In 2018, the farm-gate value for tender fruit in Ontario totaled more than CAD$66m; meanwhile, table grapes accounted for over CAD$4m. This makes up a combined total of more than CAD$71m.
Moreover, over 91% of this fruit is sold through fresh-market sales.
The Canadian Agricultural Partnership’s AgriScience Program has funded this initiative.
This program is a five-year, CAD$338m initiative. It supports leading-edge discovery, applied science and innovation driven by industry research priorities, says the entity.
It is part of the group's mission to accelerate innovation. Thus, it funds and supports pre-commercial science activities and cutting-edge research that benefits Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector.
“This collaboration is a long-term commitment from growers, researchers at University of Guelph and Vineland Research and Innovation Centre to bring new varieties of locally grown fruit to consumers across Canada," said Phil Tregunno, Chair, Ontario Tender Fruit Growers.
"These partnerships have resulted in new growth opportunities that not only provide benefit for family farms, but also all of our partners, including marketers, retailers and nurseries.
"We extend our appreciation to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada for this funding.”