Truro, N.S. – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is investing $8 million in the Organic Federation of Canada (OFC) to lead a science cluster for the organic sector.
The science cluster, which will include 200 collaborating scientists from government, academia and industry, will focus on R&D to improve the sector’s competitiveness, market potential, adaptability and sustainability. The cluster will also look at how to expand organic production to meet demand for organic products such as hops, sprouts and poultry.
Priorities will include:
- Crop breeding for improved cultivars;
- Developing new reduced tillage systems for organic crops;
- Enhancing soil to improve plant health; and
- Developing new approaches to manage crop pests, diseases and livestock parasites.
Canada’s organic exports are now valued at more than $458 million, with most exports going to the U.S. and the E.U.
The OFC is a not-for-profit corporation that promotes the interests of stakeholders in the organic sector. The organization will manage the science cluster with help from the Organic Agriculture Centre of Canada at Dalhousie University.