Mr. Speaker, the Atlantic Food and Horticultural Research Centre in Kentville, Nova Scotia, is too important to Atlantic growers to lose. The research scientists in Kentville understand local growing conditions and work with local industries to overcome local challenges.
When the honeybees began to disappear, the centre worked with local blueberry growers to aid crop pollination. It works with local wine experts to create new grape varieties for Nova Scotia's colder climate. As local wine maker Bruce Ewert says, the research centre's work “is very crucial for our industry”.
The government has recently appointed a panel to review all non-regulatory research labs across the country and the future of this research centre is now unclear.
I urge the government to bring this review out into the open, to work with and listen to all local stakeholders including the growers and of course the employees of the research facilities. I urge the government to keep research for Canada's agricultural industries in the regions, and close to the producers and the commodity groups affected.