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Fruit Resilience Research an Key Priority in Ontario

In a bid to enhance Ontario's fruit industry's resilience, Vance Badawey, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport, announced funding of up to $1,099,624 for the Ontario Tender Fruit Growers.

This initiative, part of the AgriScience Program under the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership, aims to develop innovative fruit varieties and reduce the sector's carbon footprint.

The project led by the Ontario Tender Fruit Growers, with collaboration from the Ontario Apple Growers, focuses on key outcomes such as establishing baseline data on carbon emissions in fruit farming, evaluating climate-smart practices, and developing superior fruit varieties.

The goal is to bolster production efficiency, extend shelf-life, and mitigate losses due to shipping, storage, and climate change impacts.

"This new generation of homegrown fruit varieties offers benefits to growers, consumers and the environment. We will reduce our reliance on imported product, increase consumption of healthy food, and cut down on emissions-producing food waste – and by expanding production here at home, we’re also supporting the economic sustainability of our agriculture sector." - Phil Tregunno, Chair, Ontario Tender Fruit Growers

“As tree fruit growers, we’ve long been adopting sustainable farming practices that let us improve soil health and use water, fertilizer and crop science tools more efficiently as we produce healthy food for our consumers. The new tools being developed through this research will help us measure the impacts of our actions and identify additional areas for change so that we can continue to improve our environmental sustainability.” - Brian Rideout, Chair, Ontario Apple Growers

By investing in climate-resilient fruit varieties, Ontario aims to fortify its agricultural competitiveness and contribute to a more sustainable future.

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