PROVINCE CONTINUES CONSULTATIONS ON GROWING FORWARD 2

January 15, 2013

Manitoba farmers, agriculture processors and members of the public are again encouraged to share their input to determine how Growing Forward 2 programs will be delivered, Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives (MAFRI) Minister Ron Kostyshyn said today.

"Agriculture is a key part of Manitoba's economy and investments in innovation and research under Growing Forward 2 will help keep the industry strong into the future," said Kostyshyn. "I want to hear from all sectors of the agriculture industry on how to best deliver programs that will help Manitoba develop new products and take advantage of new markets."

Growing Forward 2 is the new policy framework for Canada's agriculture, agri-food and agri-products sector based on the federal, provincial and territorial ministers of agriculture's agreement in Whitehorse in September 2012. Kostyshyn said the five-year agreement has the flexibility needed for Manitoba to be responsive to local opportunities, adding Growing Forward 2 (GF2) will help Manitoba address challenges through proactive investments in research and innovation for the future of the provincial agriculture industry, while also maintaining important business risk-management programs such as AgriInsurance.

"Ongoing dialogue with the agriculture industry played an important role in shaping Manitoba's position while negotiating Growing Forward 2," said Kostyshyn. "This dialogue will continue to be integral to developing and delivering programs to support a successful agriculture sector in Manitoba."

These consultations build on a Dec. 18, 2012, meeting with industry organizations in which MAFRI received input on GF2 priorities and activities.

MAFRI will be holding regional meetings across the province with farmers, food processors, stakeholders, researchers and the public. Dates and locations for the meetings are:

* Monday, Jan. 28, 9 a.m. to noon, St. Viator's Church meeting room, 307 Whitmore Ave. E., Dauphin;

* Tuesday, Jan, 29, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Steinbach Legion, 294 Lumber St., Steinbach;

* Wednesday, Jan, 30, 1 to 4 p.m., Royal Canadian Legion, 28 First St. N.W., Carman;

* Wednesday, Jan. 30, 5:30 to 8:30 p.m., Conference Room, Ag Centre, 1129 Queens Ave., Brandon; and

* Thursday, Jan. 31, 1 to 4 p.m., Arborg Credit Union Room, Arborg Bifrost Community Centre, Arborg.


Manitobans can also stop by and share their views and ideas at the MAFRI booth at Ag Days in Brandon today until Thursday or provide their feedback online at: www.gov.mb.ca/agriculture/growingforward.

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Industry Input Key To Successful Program Delivery: Kostyshyn