Premier Iain Rankin at the announcement. (Communications N.S. photo)

HALIFAX/EAST HANTS: The Rankin government is investing $5 million over two years in projects that increase Nova Scotia’s year-round food production, reduce emissions and reduce the amount of food imported.

Premier Iain Rankin made the funding announcement during a visit to Nova Agri’s Vital Berry Farms in the Annapolis Valley on March 22.

The Agriculture Clean Technology Program will support farmers and food processors in improving their operations. This includes adopting clean technologies that help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improving energy efficiency, promoting sustainable and clean growth, increasing value-added agricultural production, extending growing seasons and improving costs of production.

“Food is the single biggest industry in Nova Scotia, and our government wants to help it grow,” said Premier Rankin. “Many Nova Scotia food producers are already innovators, so investing in green technologies to reduce emissions is the next step.”

The program is aimed at supporting small to medium projects that will strengthen the food security of Nova Scotians.

“The pandemic has helped us to better understand the importance of strengthening our food security,” said Agriculture Minister Keith Colwell. “Investing in cleaner technology will help the agriculture sector, extend the growing seasons and result in more food produced here at home.”

“For 50 years we have built our business on production out in the field, but more recently, thanks to advancements in technology, we are able to move production inside on a substantially smaller footprint providing a high-quality product in a more environmentally sustainable approach. As an added benefit, in partnership with the local retailers and farm markets, we are working together to displace imported fruit and vegetables with locally produced produce.”
     – Ian Newcombe, president of Dykeview Farms Ltd and Earl Kidston, president of Nova Agri Inc.

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