September 17, 2012 (Winnipeg) – The agreement between Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture on a new five year Growing Forward 2 policy framework is good news for the Canadian pulse and special crops industry. “Investments into innovation, competitiveness and market development create the right conditions for the Canadian pulse industry to compete globally,” says Murad Al-Katib, President & CEO of Alliance Grain Traders and Chair of Pulse Canada and the Canadian Special Crops Association (CSCA).
Canada’s pulse industry has completed its strategic planning process at the national level and is finalizing the details on its five year work plan aimed at enhancing the profitability of the industry. “The Growing Forward 2 framework has identified key areas of importance to the pulse industry,” says Gordon Bacon, CEO of Pulse Canada and the CSCA. “The focus now must be on ensuring the partnerships and projects are in place to deliver the results that both industry and government expect,” says Bacon.
Pulse Canada’s innovation program will have achieved success when more pulse based products are on the market and more people are eating them. The attributes of pulses have attracted the attention of significant players in the food industry. “Pulses have a strong nutritional profile and make an important contribution to the health of the environment; both areas of great interest to food companies in Canada and around the world,” says Peter Watts, Director of Market Innovation at Pulse Canada. “Taking advantage of interest from food companies will require strategic investments into research and development on health, nutrition, functionality and sustainability. The industry is ready to develop partnerships across the food value chain to accelerate the pace of innovation,” says Watts.
The Growing Forward 2 framework also stresses the importance of competitiveness – increasing access to international markets and reducing obstacles to trade. “Opening doors and ensuring they stay open are pillars of the industry’s five year plan,” says Greg Cherewyk, Executive Director of Pulse Canada and the CSCA. “Pulse Canada has put together a full suite of proactive initiatives designed to mitigate risk at home and to reduce risk abroad and there’s great potential to partner with other organizations to achieve what are clearly common goals,” says Cherewyk.
“The same can be said for the plan to create greater efficiencies in the Canadian supply chain. Access to markets is only part of the equation. Predictable service that drives costs out of the supply chain so that Canadian businesses are productive and competitive has to be everyone’s top priority,” says Cherewyk.
“There is definitely a lot of work to be done and there is a great sense of optimism as the details of plans start to fall into place,” says Bacon.
Pulse Canada is the national association representing growers, traders and processors of Canadian pulse crops. Canada is the world’s largest supplier of pulses, with exports reaching more than 150 countries.
For more information: Courtney Hirota, Director of Marketing & Communications, (204) 925-3785