Saskatchewan identifies agriculture technology as key driver of future economic growth
Saskatchewan wants to be a global leader in agricultural technology in the years and decades ahead, and it is planting seeds for growth in this sector through two innovation-based funds. Under a new $1 million AgTech Growth Fund, the province will invest in research-and-development projects related to the agriculture industry — for example, in areas such as traceability, food processing, robotics and farm equipment, indoor agriculture and animal health.
The goal of this first-of-its-kind fund for the province is to drive private investment in transformative farming. Meanwhile, the province is setting aside $15 million in a larger Innovation Saskatchewan fund to help develop new technologies in agriculture. Dollars will go to agriculture technology companies that require venture capital to move past the startup phase and scale up business operations.
Agriculture is a traditional economic strength in Saskatchewan, and it also is seen as a future driver of jobs and prosperity: By 2050, global demand for food is anticipated to rise by 70 percent. In 2019, agriculture accounted for 8.8 percent of gross domestic product in Saskatchewan.