Federal Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay was in Glenlea, Manitoba on Tuesday to announce over $9 million in funding to develop a new Canola Research Cluster.

"It will support research into improving yields, more in greenhouse gas emissions, increasing carbon sequestration, improving soil and water quality, and creating new uses for canola. And it brings together industry and scientists to deliver research that meets the needs of the hard-working farmers and processors."

The federal funding when combined with the $8 million in funding from the Canola Council of Canada means over the next five years over $17 million will be invested into Canola research.

Stats show that approximately 20 million acres of Canola are produced annually, accounting for $29.9 billion in economic activity.

Dr Curtis Rempel, vice president of crop production and innovation with the Canola Council of Canada says a total of 17 research activities were chosen for funding under the new research cluster which will help the industry become stronger and more resilient in a number of ways.

"Building on our understanding of advance for our nutrient stewardship, further contributing to canola's positive environmental impact. Expanding our knowledge of canola genetics to more effectively combat pathogens, pests, and environmental stressors. Strengthening economic advantages for growers through yield improvements, optimizing inputs and reducing production risk, and enhancing understanding of the positive impact of canola in the open dairy cow and agriculture diets."

MacAulay says this research will help contribute to Canada's goal of reaching net zero emissions by 2050.

He notes the global demand for Canadian canola seed, oil and meal is growing.

"We’re committed to helping the sector meet these demands and establish new markets. This new investment in research and innovation is vitally important to ensuring our Canadian canola farmers have a sustainable and profitable future."

Canola is viewed as having a lot of potential as both a nutritious food ingredient and a renewable fuel source.