Canada’s Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Marie-Claude Bibeau and Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister David Marit announced $6.6 million in support on June 20  for innovative livestock and forage research being conducted in the province.

The commitment provides funding over the next five years to the University of Saskatchewan’s Livestock and Forage Centre of Excellence (LFCE), an organization that focuses on beef, bison and forage research in support of the continued growth of the industry. The funding, under the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Sustainable CAP), was announced at the LFCE’s Summer Field Day presented by Canadian Western Agribition.

“The livestock sector plays a key role in the overall sustainability of Canada’s agricultural industry,” said Bibeau. “Investments in research, and getting that research into the hands of producers, provide tools to help the sector become more resilient, address challenges and seize opportunities to continue opening new markets.”

“The provincial economic growth targets we’ve set for the end of this decade connect directly to our agriculture industry and to our livestock producers, who are already among the most sustainable in the world,” Marit said. “This funding for the LFCE directly supports the kind of innovative work that helps our livestock sector not only stay globally competitive but remain a leader when it comes to best practices.”

The LFCE is a research, teaching and knowledge transfer facility that links research and innovation across the livestock production chain, and enables innovative feedlot, cow-calf and veterinarian research and extension. Research, innovation and knowledge transfer are essential to identifying and supporting solutions to the challenges facing Saskatchewan’s livestock sector which is itself a vital part of the provincial agriculture industry. This also contributes to achieving Saskatchewan’s Growth Plan goal of increasing provincial livestock cash receipts to $3 billion by the end of this decade.

“This five-year funding demonstrates a strong commitment to advancing the livestock and forage industries in the province and beyond,” LFCE Director at the University of Saskatchewan Dr. Scott Wright said. “It will enable us to do our part and further leverage this funding to grow capacity in these sectors through the dynamic and innovative integrated research, education and outreach conducted at our centre by students, scientists and our staff team.”

Sustainable CAP is a five-year, $3.5 billion investment by Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial governments that supports Canada’s agri-food and agri-products sectors. This includes $1 billion in federal programs and activities and a $2.5 billion commitment that is cost-shared 60 per cent federally and 40 per cent provincially/territorially for programs that are designed and delivered by provinces and territories.