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Que. dairy research backed with $3M

The Quebec and federal governments and the province’s dairy industry have pledged $3 million to support research that boosts the competitiveness of Quebec’s dairy farmers and processors.

The new Programme de recherche en partenariat pour l’innovation en production et en transformation laitières, announced Tuesday, is expected to support about 15 projects, with an eye toward developing skills and technology for the industry, in partnership with Quebec’s universities and with government researchers.

To accelerate research, the agreement may also cover projects already supported by Novalait, a private agency funded by Quebec dairy farmers and processors, the program partners said.

Research subjects, for example, could include dairy products’ unique health and nutritive benefits, product quality, new processes or sustainable development of dairy farms and processing.

The partners in this research program noted they’ve collectively put up $6.9 million for 49 such projects since 1996.

Partner agencies along with Novalait (in for about $872,000 over five years) include Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (also about $872,000), Quebec’s agriculture, fisheries and food ministry ($715,000) and FQRNT, a nature and technology research fund maintained by the provincial economic development ministry (about $598,000).

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