AgriRisk Initiatives Program now available

The funding will encourage the development of new risk management products and services for the agricultural sector.
Potatoes in Canada
July 31, 2018 | Canada
By Potatoes in Canada
The AgriRisk Initiatives Program, dedicated to exploring and developing risk management products and services, has been renewed under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. 

Lawrence MacAulay, minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, announced the $55 million program will encourage partnerships between agriculture industry stakeholders, researchers, and federal, provincial and territorial governments to proactively explore and develop new risk management products and services for the agricultural sector.

Funding is available under two components: Research and Development and Administrative Capacity Building. The research and development component provides funding for the research and development of potential new private sector or industry-led, tools to assist the industry in addressing risks. Applications for the Research and Development component are now available, and will be accepted until September 28th, 2018.

In addition, MicroGrants is a new category under the research and development component. It will provide up to $25,000 per year in funding for academic research proposals that explore the development of alternative risk management tools, or propose different ways to address issues with existing Business Risk Management (BRM) programs. 

The administrative capacity building component provides funding to build administrative capacity for the delivery of new risk management tools and applications are also currently being accepted.

In response to recommendations received from the BRM Review Expert Panel, priority will be given to proposals for industry-led projects to develop new and innovative business risk management tools.

Under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, governments support the development of new risk management tools to help stabilize farmers' incomes, strengthen farm businesses and promote growth in the sector. However, the Partnership is not provisioned to support farmers and the agriculture industry if there are major price shocks, or if there is a prolonged impact to agriculture as a result of trade issues. The Grain Farmers of Ontario (GFO) issued a statement advocating for the establishment of a contingency plan for farmers to minimize the effects of ongoing trade disputes with the United States. 

Canadian farmers are already feeling the impact of the trade dispute in soybean prices, which are closely linked to U.S. prices and have fallen almost 20 percent since April when China first announced a 25 percent tariff on U.S. soybeans, according to GFO's statement. 

Currently, a $2 billion contingency fund exists, but it is allotted to Canada’s steel, aluminum, and manufacturing sectors.

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