The Canadian Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Marie-Claude Bideau, announced an announcement of over $860,000 in six businesses under the Innovative Solutions Canada program.
A total of six small businesses are receiving up to $150,000 to advance automation and robotic technologies for solving challenges such as work productivity and labour shortages and operational efficiency in the agricultural sector. This announcement follows an earlier $1 million announcement to seven projects through ISC.
“These projects are supporting Canadian agricultural technology companies as they develop innovative solutions to help farmers reduce waste, conserve resources and improve efficiency. By investing in innovation and technology, Canadian agriculture will continue to pave the way for new ideas and methods to keep Canadian agriculture strong and well-positioned for the future.” – The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
The program provides entrepreneurs and innovators bringing solutions to tackle current challenges linked to climate change and supply chain pressure to develop their novel solutions, products or technologies. Not only does it promote innovation in the Canadian market but it leads to a more prosperous and competitive sector.
Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) is an indoor technology-based production system where crops are grown under a modified and highly conditioned environment. CEA production is labour intensive, including tasks such as planting, management of plants, cleaning, harvesting, pest management, pruning, sorting and packaging.
Projects receiving funding through the Enhancing Automation in CEA Farming Challenge will work to develop automation and robotic technologies to reduce time spent on labour intensive tasks and reduce costs for CEA facilities.
The Government of Canada is committed to supporting the innovations of small businesses and entrepreneurs to help develop efficient, sustainable and cost-effective solutions to ensure Canada’s agricultural sector remains competitive.
“Technological innovation is absolutely necessary to address key challenges faced by the Canadian agri-food sector. By supporting the projects announced today, our government is giving these businesses the opportunity to grow and innovate while ensuring Canadians continue to have access to the highest-quality food and agriculture products.” – The Honourable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry
- ISC, administered by Innovation Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED), is a $100-million program to help Canada’s entrepreneurs and small businesses develop innovative and sustainable solutions to complex challenges. Under ISC, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and other participating departments partner with ISED to develop challenges and evaluate incoming applications.
- If successful at the proof of concept stage, projects are each eligible for up to $1 million under Phase 2 of the ISC Challenge for prototype development.