Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan Inc. administered the follow programs previously through Agriculture and Agri-Foods Canada.
- Seizing opportunities
- Responding to new and emerging issues
- Pathfinding and piloting solutions to new and ongoing issues
- Pathfinding means looking at different options to prepare the sector to face the future and remain competitive.
- Piloting means the testing of ideas or approaches to see if they are effective enough to use in everyday applications in the sector.
Canadian Adaptation and Rural Development in Saskatchewan (CARDS) Program
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s CARD funding program took place from 1995 to 2004, with CARD I & CARD II providing $450 million in federal funding to thousands of industry-led national and regional projects.
Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan Inc. (ACS) delivered Saskatchewan’s share of the CARD program. Saskatchewan’s share of CARD I was $8,830,000 and CARD II was $14,479,370.
The goal of CARD was to assist the agriculture and agri-food sector to adapt to new challenges and opportunities, and to support new ways of doing business. The six priority areas funded under CARD included: Industry and Rural Resource Development; Business Development Activities; Capital Equipment Purchases; Strategic Initiatives; Valued-Added Development; and Environmental Stewardship.
Eligible recipients included individuals, legal corporations, industry associations, agricultural associations, non-profit organizations, cooperatives, aboriginals, educational institutions, and municipal governments.
Upon the program completion, ACS administered 917 CARDS approved projects, for a total funding commitment of $20,556,161.
ACAAFS – Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food Saskatchewan program
ACAAF was a five year, $240 million funding program provided by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada designed to position Canada’s agriculture and agri-food sector at the leading edge to capture new opportunities.
Saskatchewan’s share of the ACAAF program was delivered by the Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan Inc. (ACS). Saskatchewan’s annual allocation of ACAAF funding was $3,227,845. Since the program inception, the ACS Board of Directors approved 325 ACAAFS projects, for a total ACAAFS project funding commitment of $17,048,357.00.
ACAAFS projects funded under this program had to demonstrate a direct relationship with, and an anticipated positive impact on, the provincial agricultural landscape. The program applicants had to self-identify as being dedicated to enhancing provincial economic growth.
The goal of the ACAAFS program was to support industry-led approaches and solutions that allowed the sector to quickly adapt to changes, respond to emerging issues and seize new opportunities. ACAAFS focused on facilitating the agriculture, agri-food, and agri-based products sector’s ability to seize opportunities, to respond to new and emerging issues, and to pathfind and pilot solutions to new and ongoing issues in order to help it adapt and remain competitive. The agriculture and agri-food industry is constantly changing and requires flexibility and the capacity to address new issues as they emerge. To help achieve that ACAAFS focused on:
Seizing opportunities was meant to take advantage of a situation or circumstance to develop a new idea, product, niche, or market opportunity to the benefit of the sector.
Responding to new and emerging issues was meant to address issues that were not of concern previously, or were not known about at all. Issues are often different throughout Canada because the state of development of the sector, soil conditions, and climate vary considerably from one region to another.
Pathfinding and piloting solutions to new and ongoing issues was meant to test ways of dealing with new issues, or find new ways to deal with existing issues. Under the ACAAFS program, this was done in two ways:
Canadian Agricultural Adaptation Program (CAAP)
Agriculture Council of Saskatchewan Inc. delivered the CAAP program in Saskatchewan.
The Canadian Agricultural Adaptation Program (CAAP) was a five-year (2009-2014) $163 million Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) initiative. The federal program encouraged farmers, processors, distributors, and retailers to work together to find innovative solutions to common concerns and to explore new market opportunities to help the agricultural sector adapt and remain competitive.
Eligible projects were in the areas of traceability, environment, climate change, capacity development, pests and diseases, and many more.
There were national, regional, and multi-regional components to the program. In situations where more than one province or territory shared the same priority, projects were considered under the collective outcomes umbrella. Increasing collaboration and forming new alliances throughout the sector were key to success.
ACS’s share was $14.437 million. We funded 214 CAAP projects over the five year period for a total commitment of $14.281 million.
CAAP was very successful in Saskatchewan. The demand for CAAP funding was very strong over the course of the 5 year program and the funded projects were very diverse, filling many current and future needs and building upon research and activities started with ACAAF-funded projects. CAAP funding in many instances provided the impetus and seed money for many proponents to move up the value chain from the traditional commodity based (primary producer) agriculture to a more developed and advanced value added sector. This benefited agriculture in the province substantially by providing more profit and sustainability to producers, processors and by opening up new markets and marketing opportunities for the sector’s agriculture based companies and organizations.
Our project proponents indicated over and over again that the delivery of CAAP through provincial industry councils has been a major factor in the success of the program, as ACS was able to respond in an efficient and timely manner to the needs of Saskatchewan producers and processors. ACS was able to work closely with the project proponents in developing their applications to ensure they would not only meet CAAP’s criteria, but that there projects would have a significant impact on the agriculture sector in the province of Saskatchewan for many years to come.