International market development: Support for biofood exports
December 2, 2018 – Quebec City, Quebec – Agriculture and Agri‑Food Canada
The Government of Canada and the Government of Quebec are proud to announce the joint Soutien aux exportations bioalimentaires (SEB) program. Mr. Jean-Claude Poissant, Parliamentary Secretary to the Federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Mr. Lawrence MacAulay, and Mr. André Lamontagne, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, highlighted that the program has an annual envelope of $2 million over three years, from 2018 to 2021. The new program, which will be administered by the Agri-Food Export Group Québec‑Canada, will provide support for agri‑food businesses in implementing their international business plan. These investments are made under the Canada-Quebec Agreement on the implementation of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.
Ever-increasing international competition and new, highly competitive products from exporting countries force Quebec businesses to be creative, adapt and adopt marketing strategies to remain competitive. These efforts require significant resources. The SEB, which replaces the Exportateurs de classe mondiale program, is intended to support businesses through these challenges and introduces some new features:
- Increase in the financial assistance rate from 40% to 50% of eligible expenses.
- Increase in maximum financial assistance from $50,000 to $100,000 per year, per applicant.
- Financial support to accelerate the deployment of the Quebec biofood offer on online sales platforms.
- Support for the hiring of specialists in developing markets outside Quebec.
- Support for Quebec biofood trademarks abroad.
- Support for exporters seeking to establish a permanent trade presence outside Quebec.
The 2018-2025 Biofood Policy – Feeding Our World aims to increase Quebec’s international biofood exports from $6 billion to $14 billion by 2025. The SEB will contribute to achieving this target.
“The SEB program dovetails perfectly with the Government of Canada’s objective of driving agri‑food export growth up to $75 billion annually. This government support will allow Quebec’s business know-how to be recognized worldwide and ensure solid growth in the sector, while contributing to the creation of good jobs for the middle class.”
– Mr. Jean-Claude Poissant, Parliamentary Secretary to the federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
“The recently concluded trade agreements create great new opportunities for Quebec’s businesses. They open doors to exciting markets. We have to seize every opportunity and Our government will be proactive to help our business people to stand out. The SEB program is a stepping stone to foreign markets.”
– Mr. André Lamontagne, Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPAQ)
“The Export Group is proud to continue working with MAPAQ to provide a reinvented, more generous assistance initiative that is consistent with exporters’ reality today, thanks to a variety of eligible activities. We look forward to assisting businesses of all sizes to propel their sales outside Quebec and abroad through the SEB program.”
– Mr. André A. Coutu, President and CEO of the Agri-Food Export Group Québec-Canada
Founded in 1990, the Agri-Food Export Group Québec-Canada is a non‑profit organization with some 450 members. The Group has implemented a number of services and carried out hundreds of activities facilitating foreign market access for Quebec biofood exporters.
Under the 2018-2025 Biofood Policy – Feeding Our World, Quebec established the goal of increasing its international biofood exports by 6.5% every year.
For the past several years, the biofood sector has ranked among the top four manufacturing industries for Quebec exports.
More than 50% of sales in the food production and processing sector are outside Quebec.
The Canada-Quebec Agreement on the implementation of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership accounts for federal and provincial funding of $293 million over five years, from 2018 to 2023. This agreement supports strategic initiatives that will help the sectors grow, innovate and prosper. Sixty-percent (60%) of the funding for these initiatives comes from the Government of Canada and 40% from the Government of Canada.