Federal Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay announced an investment today of up to $89 million for 49 projects under the Supply Management Processing Investment Fund.

This Fund is a key part of the Government of Canada's commitment to supporting processors in supply-managed sectors in addressing the impacts of recent international trade agreements.

The government says through this funding, dairy, poultry and egg processors are able to purchase and install new automated equipment and technology, allowing them to boost their production capacity and productivity, while also helping them respond to environmental challenges and labour shortages.

MacAulay says with this funding, dairy, poultry and egg processors will be able to modernize their operations.

Mark Hubert, President & CEO, Canadian Poultry and Egg Processors Council says the Fund has enabled numerous poultry and egg processors to make important new investments in their facilities.

"New investments in equipment and technology will facilitate companies' efforts to increase productivity and efficiency and enable Canadian poultry and egg processors to undertake valuable and leading-edge modernization projects."

Out of the 49 projects announced across Canada five are located in the Prairies.

One project out of Saskatchewan is included in today's announcement. Star Egg Co. Ltd. out of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan will receive $5 million to modernize and automate the packaging process and install new processing equipment to enable in-house egg processing activities.    

Four projects are being funded in Alberta 

- Crystal Springs Cheese at Coalhurst will receive over 544 thousand dollars to install a two-phase milk ultrafiltration system.

 - Sunworks Farm - a poultry processor -  in Armera will receive 160 thousand dollars to automate its slaughter, cutting, deboning, and packaging operation.

 - Tiras Dairies Inc. at Camrose will receive $121,900 to install a new fully automated production line for the company's yogurt processing activities.  

 - Jenner Colony Farming Co. Ltd at Jenner will receive $43,600 to upgrade the refrigeration system and install new processing equipment for the company's poultry primary processing activities.

No projects were funded out of Manitoba.

Today's announcement was made in Ingleside, Ontario, at Lactalis Canada's cheese plant, which is set to receive up to $3.3 million for new automated cheese processing and packaging equipment.

Mathieu Frigon, President and CEO, of the Dairy Processors Association of Canada says the Supply Management Processing Investment Fund has shown its value in leveraging increased investments from dairy processors in process innovation and upgrading plants. 

"We commend government officials for their flexibility and responsiveness to the evolving needs of the dairy processing community in the administration of this program."

The application intake for funding under the Supply Management Processing Investment Fund is still open more information on the program and how to apply can be found here.    

The program provides non-repayable contributions, supporting up to 50% of eligible project costs for small- and medium-sized enterprises and up to 25% for large organizations of 500 employees or more.