August 29, 2018 6:48 pm
Updated: August 30, 2018 4:17 pm

Canadian dairy farmers receive a $250-million boost by feds

A federally-funded program that invests in dairy farms will allow the dairy industry to expand.

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Many Canadian dairy farmers are rejoicing after receiving a portion of a $250-million fund by the federal government.

The cash is a part of a new federal program entitled, Dairy Farm Investment Program, where its intention is to increase productivity and competitiveness and prepare each farm for the implementation of the Canada–European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement.

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Eleven farms in the Hastings-Lennox and Addington area were given a portion of $861,362 on behalf of Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Lawrence MacAulay.

One of the 11 farms is Ripple Brook Farms, and its owner, Kevin McLean, has already invested the funds into a high-tech cow collar that tracks each cow and their activity.

The collars have a small microphone in them and they track how the cows eat, where they go, and how active they are, to determine if they are well or if they need extra medical attention, said McLean.

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MP for Hastings-Lennox and Addington Mike Bossio told Global News that this is a decision that will benefit local farmers and the residents for many years to come.

“These investments will help ensure not only that we keep good jobs in rural areas and future generations from moving into the cities, but also that we will continue to benefit from the healthy and well-regulated dairy products that our dairy farmers provide for us. Local family-owned farms also spend that income in the local economy, which further contributes to rural sustainability,” said Bossio.

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Canada’s supply-management dairy industry is currently under threat, as President Donald Trump is seeking more access for American dairy farmers, and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has pledged to protect dairy farmers north of the border, which has caused a standstill in negotiations.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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