Three of Canada’s leading malting barley organizations will collaborate on a long-term international strategy and a unified brand to highlight Canada’s world-class malt and barley industry with the support of the Harper Government. The Honourable Steven Fletcher, Minister of State (Transport) and member of Parliament for Charleswood-St. James-Assiniboia, on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz, today announced an investment to help the Canadian malting barley industry access new markets locally and abroad.
“The Harper Government’s top priority remains the economy, and we continue to work with farmers to create and expand export opportunities,” said Minister Fletcher. “Western barley farmers are embracing marketing freedom, and now our government is helping them market their world-class product to new markets around the world.”
This AgriMarketing investment of more than $525,000 will enable the Canadian Malting Barley Technical Centre, the Malting Industry Association of Canada, and the Brewing and Malting Barley Research Institute to increase their competitiveness in new and existing markets through innovative marketing and communications and through the development of a Canadian Malt Barley Brand. Product testing and evaluations will also be done on new malting barley varieties, the current year’s harvest, and cargo shipments to highlight the attributes of the current Canadian crop for international customers.
The arrival of marketing freedom for Canadian farmers has brought with it new potential and prosperity for producers. Western Canadian barley farmers are now able to sell their grains in an open market or, if they choose, through the voluntary CWB.
Canadian malting barley is known around the world for its high quality and superior characteristics. Canadian malt and malting barley exports reached more than $600 million in 2011 and are expected to continue to grow with the new marketing freedom options and the assistance of the AgriMarketing Program.
This announcement is part of an $88-million investment provided through the AgriMarketing Program, under the Growing Forward policy framework, which helps industry implement long-term international strategies, including activities such as international market development, industry-to-industry trade advocacy, and consumer awareness and branding.
The Harper Government has identified market development as a priority under Growing Forward 2, and this announcement is another example of what is being done to enhance competitiveness, drive innovation, and ensure long-term growth in Canadian agriculture. In addition to generous multi-year funding for risk management programs, Growing Forward 2 also includes more than $3 billion for innovation, competitiveness, and market development.