With new crushing capacity, millions of dollars for export market outreach, new research funding and facilities, and more, Canada’s canola industry is poised for a decade of significant growth, said JoAnne Buth, president at Canola Council of Canada’s 43rd annual convention in San Francisco.
“In 2009, it was clear that the canola industry’s success to date is only the beginning of what it will achieve over the next decade,” she stated. “Canada produced almost 12 million tonnes of canola, surpassing the industry’s expectations for production volume and average yield and ensuring that we will meet our 2015 production target of 15 million tonnes. Now more than ever, we are invested in our people, facilities, research and in the long-term success of this industry.”
Speaking to attendees at the sold-out convention, Buth noted 2009 achievements, including:
Announcement of 2.5 million tonnes of new crushing capacity;
Construction of three new canola research facilities, two of which have already opened;
Near-record seeded acreage of canola, which was harvested with higher oil content (average 44 per cent) and good yield in spite of challenging growing conditions;
The launch of new specialty canola oils, reinforcing canola’s heart-healthy reputation;
Expansion of export market development. In the U. S. – Canada’s No. 1 export market for canola oil – consumption of the oil increased by 12 per cent alone.
In addition, last year brought announcements of $9 million of government and industry funding to maintain and expand access to global markets and $5.4 million for new crop research.
“This funding will lead to further improvements in canola varieties, support for why canola oil is the healthiest oil in the world and continued increases in domestic use and exports of canola seed, oil and meal,” said CCC chairman Richard Wansbutter. “The confidence the industry has shown in the past year provides further momentum for growth in what is already one of Canada’s greatest agricultural success stories.”
Canada has roughly 50,000 canola growers and 200,000 Canadians employed by the industry. The country is the world’s largest exporter of canola and one of its top producers.
“Our industry is the result of innovation and we continue to invest in the resilience of our crop and its profitability for Canadian farmers,” Buth concluded.