On April 4 and 5, 2013, CSTA organized a value chain symposium in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The objective was to bring the crop value chain together in the same place to make substantial progress towards three goals:
1. Reach a common understanding of how research and plant breeding is funded in other countries
2. Reach a common understanding of how research and plant breeding is funded for different crop kinds in different regions in Canada
3. Develop a set of principles for a possible funding mechanism in Canada
It was a very well attended symposium with participation from plant breeders, researchers, funding institutions, producers, the seed industry, educational institutions and federal and provincial governments. It was also a very successful symposium, surpassing the goals that were established. The process doesn’t end with the symposium. A working group has been established to, with continuous input and feedback from the value chain, develop a “strawman” proposal for a Canadian mechanism to fund research and plant breeding, which will be presented to the larger symposium group this fall. This process will be completely transparent and input will be sought and encouraged from all who have an interest. Reports of the working group meetings; requests for input etc. will all be posted in a special section of CSTA’s website. Just follow this link.