Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Marie-Claude Bibeau has announced an investment of over $1.8 million under the AgriAssurance Program to assist Bioindustrial Innovation Canada in further developing quality standards to accelerate the growth of the bioeconomy in the agriculture sector.

The bioeconomy is based on the production and sale of products other than foodstuffs made from agricultural, aquatic and forestry resources, or even municipal waste.

“The bioeconomy will allow us to maximize the use of our agricultural resources, including leftover byproducts. By adding value to products once considered to be waste, and ensuring the quality of these bioproducts through strict quality standards," said Marie-Claude Bibeau, "We will help strengthen Canada’s position as a leader in sustainable agriculture while creating new revenue sources for our agricultural producers.”

With the Government of Canada’s investment, Bioindustrial Innovation Canada will work with Biomass Quality Network Canada to develop research-based standards for measuring and assessing the quality of bioproducts made from agricultural sources. 

“A vibrant, maturing Canadian bioproducts industry has incredible potential to be a world leader when supports are in place from a reliable, robust, consistent supply of biomass and, through the support of AAFC, the Biomass Quality Network Canada (BQNC) is being established to make this a reality. Accelerating the adoption of Canadian agricultural biomass through the development of standards, methods, and guidelines has been the focus of BQNC," said Sandy Marshall the Executive Director of Bioindustrial Innovation Canada, "Alongside the provision of value-added services, and management and monitoring of a certification system.”

This investment is aiming to help producers better understand the quality standards needed to market raw materials to processors, and in turn, equip processors with more information and educational tools to assure their customers that bioproducts can replace traditional materials in terms of quality and performance.

To strengthen the bioproducts industry in Canada, the project will also help scientists continue to explore plant genetics and environmental factors that could lead to the development of new crop varieties to supply bioproducts production.