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Feds back export development for dairy genetics

Canada’s cattle, embryo and semen exporters will get $1.22 million in federal funds to back their international market development work.

Parliamentary ag secretary Pierre Lemieux on Wednesday announced the funding for the Canadian Livestock Genetics Association (CLGA) while attending the annual meeting for the Dairy Farmers of Ontario.

The money, flowing from the AgriMarketing program, is to help pay for “a variety of targeted international market development initiatives to increase the volume and the value of dairy cattle, embryo and semen exports, and raise awareness of our top quality Canadian genetic programs around the world.”

The CLGA represents cattle, embryo and semen exporters and breed associations on market access and animal health issues for producers in both national and international markets.

Canada’s exports of dairy genetics rose by 73 per cent in 2008 over 2007, to a total value of $177.8 million, the government said.

“Our government is steadfast in our support for supply management and is creating opportunities for our producers at home by increasing exports and promoting our top quality dairy genetics around the world,” Lemieux said in a release Wednesday.

The AgriMarketing program is the successor to the Canadian Agriculture and Food International (CAFI) program, which ended last March. AgriMarketing is budgeted for $88 million over four years to help agrifood producers and processors increase exports.

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