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Agriculture researchers aim to put sector on election agenda

Canada needs a long-term research policy with stable funding for its agriculture sector – an issue that must be raised by politicians in the upcoming federal election campaign, scientists and policy advocates say.

The pending national agriculture-based research strategy – which included consultations with 1,000 different stakeholders – comes as farm groups continue to push for agriculture to be an agenda issue in the upcoming federal election.

“Agriculture has disappeared from the frontline,” Serge Buy, CEO of the Agricultural Institute of Canada, said Tuesday when asked why the final research policy will be released September 9 – just weeks before the writ is expected to be dropped.

“If you look at the budget that was presented in March, very little was said about agriculture,” Buy said, adding that the sector rarely discussed in Ottawa.

“What we hope for is within the agricultural community there will start to be a dialogue?and some of the people opening their doors will start asking politicians questions.”

The Agriculture Institute of Canada is an organization designed to defend the sector’s research agenda by pushing for stable, long-term funding and ensuring agriculture research is included in ongoing policy discussions.

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