Minister of Natural Resources Jim Carr, on behalf of Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister, Lawrence MacAulay, announced funding of up to $2.9 million to the Composites Innovation Centre Manitoba (CIC) for two initiatives. These include the development of quality standards and measurement techniques for Canadian biomass, and research into overcoming technology barriers to the adoption of natural fibres in the composites industry.
The Growing Forward 2 (GF2), AgriMarketing Program, will provide up to $982,075 to identify quality gaps and develop quality standards and measurement techniques to facilitate the commercialization of Canadian biomass in four bioproducts sectors: biomaterials, biochemical, biofuels and bioenergy.
The GF2, AgriInnovation Program, will provide up to $1.9 million for research into how the strength and quality of composites can be affected by farming practices, varieties and weather. The CIC will also develop more robust natural fibre reinforced composites, combining these fibres with plastic resins, to produce parts for buses, cars and farm equipment that have reliable performance characteristics.
These investments help achieve the federal government’s goal of creating good jobs by making our resource sector leaders in the use and development of clean and sustainable technologies and processes.
The Composites Innovation Centre Manitoba Inc. (CIC) is a not-for-profit corporation that supports and stimulates economic growth through innovative research, development and the application of composite materials and technologies for manufacturing industries.
Biomass is derived from organic materials (plant material) that can be used as a renewable energy source.
Growing Forward 2 is a five-year (2013-2018) policy framework for Canada’s agricultural and agri-food sector.
“These projects looking into the development of biomass quality standards and real world applications for biocomposites will help strengthen and diversify Canada’s agriculture sector. Investments such as these could lead to the development of new crops, manufacturing and production opportunities, enhanced competitiveness, improved environmental sustainability and job creation.”
– Jim Carr, Minister of Natural Resources
“If Canada is going to build a vibrant clean technology economy based, in part, on the conversion of agricultural biomass into reinforcements for vehicle components or parts of bioplastics, then there are several critical factors in the supply chain that need to be dealt with. The deliverables arising from these technology developments will fill some of the gaps thereby accelerating the pace of innovation for the agricultural and composites industries and assist Canada to grow its competitiveness in the global market place”.
– Sean McKay, President and CEO, Composites Innovation Centre