Diversifying Alberta’s agricultural sector with hemp

Diversifying Alberta’s agricultural sector with hemp
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EDMONTON – The governments of Canada and Alberta are supporting the Alberta Hemp Alliance (AHA) with a one-time grant to establish a provincial industry association for hemp processing with more than $300,000 over two years (2021-2023) through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.

The grant will help AHA build capacity to fulfill its mandate as the provincial association for the hemp industry in Alberta. AHA intends to be self-sustainable beyond its first years of operations by creating revenue streams from membership fees, an industry sales levy, education and training, webinars, conferences and trade shows.

The Canadian Agricultural Partnership has also provided more than $950,000 in grants to BioComposites Group Inc. (BCG) in the past three years to support growth in the hemp fibre industry in Alberta.

BCG sources hemp straw, which was previously seen as waste, from Alberta farmers. Maximizing the potential of the entire plant will bolster farm income and lead to a more resilient agriculture sector. Having expanded into all aspects of the hemp fibre processing stream, BCG is ensuring Albertans have access to high-quality and sustainable hemp products

“Supporting the burgeoning hemp industry is important because it will provide producers new market opportunities and a way to diversify their rotation with this alternative crop. From seed to straw, the opportunities to sell this crop are growing, with value added products ranging from food to biofuel to bioplastics and construction materials. – Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

“With this grant from the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, the Alberta Hemp Alliance will continue to build a diverse and collaborative community of like-minded individuals, businesses and organizations to facilitate the rapid growth of the hemp industry in Alberta. We will continue to focus on facilitating market development and provide provincial networking, tools and resources.”- Corey Peebles, chair, Alberta Hemp Alliance

Alberta Hemp Alliance (AHA) is a non-profit association of stakeholders collaborating to create a strong, competitive and diversified hemp industry in Alberta.

In Alberta, the Partnership has committed a federal-provincial investment of up to $406 million over five years toward strategic programs and services that are aligned to national objectives and tailored to regional needs.

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