The federal government has committed another $150 million to Protein Industries Canada over the next five years, as the original funding for the innovation cluster expired last year.
The protein initiative is one of five clusters receiving funding as part of the $750 million Global Innovation Cluster program that was announced in the 2022 budget as a replacement for the Innovation Superclusters Program that was launched in 2017.
During the first five-year mandate, Protein Industries Canada (PIC) co-invested $173 million in federal funds into 55 projects involving plant-based food, feed, and ingredients, leveraging $304 million in private investment.
“This renewed investment into Protein Industries Canada will support continued innovation, scale-up of companies and the commercialization of new products in Canada’s plant-based food, feed and ingredient sector, helping us reach the goal of a $25 billion industry by 2035,” says PIC CEO Bill Greuel.
Information on the next round of funding, including how and when project expressions of interests will be accepted, will be announced in the coming weeks, says PIC.
François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, announced on Monday that each cluster will receive renewed support to “expand its national presence and deepen its impact at home and abroad.” According to a federal news release, the following funding amounts for each cluster were determined after a competitive assessment process, based on financial track record and program metrics:
- Advanced Manufacturing Cluster – up to $177 million “to support the commercialization of transformative projects that develop, scale up and apply advanced technology solutions in manufacturing, attracting talent and investments from within Canada and around the world”
- Protein Industries Cluster – up to $150 million “to facilitate investment in Canada’s plant-based food and feed ecosystem and in the creation of new products and services, while reducing the greenhouse gas emissions associated with agricultural production and food processing”
- Digital Technology Cluster – up to $125 million “to mobilize Canadian industry to build world-leading digital technologies that will make Canada a global leader in clean, healthy economic growth and see Canadian companies become digital anchor enterprises”
- Scale AI Cluster – up to $125 million “to establish Canada as a global hub for artificial intelligence dedicated to business productivity and intelligent supply chains, with Canadian technology setting the world standard and providing a competitive advantage for Canadian businesses”
- Ocean Cluster – up to $125 million “to accelerate solutions to address global ocean opportunities, building a stronger Canadian economy and a healthier planet.”