Monsanto to expand community support plan

Monsanto’s program backing community causes, special projects and/or charities in Eastern Canada will be expanded across the country this year.

The U.S. seed and ag chem company on Monday announced the 10 successful applicants to its $25,000 Genuity Project-Communities Advanced fund, with seven organizations in Ontario and three in Quebec each receiving $2,500, to share with their favoured charities.

Describing the pilot program launched last summer in Eastern Canada as a "success," Monsanto’s Canadian arm said Monday it "intends to tweak and expand the program across Canada in 2012 so that farm communities in the Prairie provinces can benefit too."

Winnipeg-based Monsanto Canada said it will now draw on "additional resources" available through The Monsanto Fund, the company’s corporate philanthropic arm, and manage the program as "part of its larger corporate giving activity."

"A program like the Genuity Project will be a nice complement to our other corporate giving activities and we look forward to introducing a Canada-wide program later this year to support those organizations that make rural communities stronger," Monsanto Canada public affairs director Trish Jordan said in a release.

Over 100 community organizations in Eastern Canada contacted Monsanto in the program’s pilot year, according to Bill Lester, the marketing lead for the company’s corn and soybean traits.

"Of course, it was a challenge to narrow down the list to just 10, because they were all worthy causes," Lester said in the same release. "There’s obviously a need for this kind of support in our farm communities and we are gratified to be able to lend a hand."

The seven successful applicants in Ontario included the Huron County Food Bank Distribution Centre, Simcoe Arts Council’s Choral Workshop, Ecole Ste-Catherine at Pain Court, the  Taraboom Children’s Foundation, the Carp Agricultural Society, Melbourne Agricultural Society and Milverton Agricultural Society.

In Quebec, the successful applicants included Au coeur des familles agricoles, the Comite des loisirs de St-Elphege and the Comite du bassin versant de la riviere Salvail.

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