Nipissing MPP Vic Fedeli wants feedback on the future of the New Liskeard Agricultural Research Station.
In a Jan. 9 release, Fedeli said provincial agriculture minister Ted McMeekin has given stakeholders two years to put together a partnership agreement in a bid to keep the facility open.
Fedeli said he toured the facility last month with a group of local farmers who want the facility to remain open.
"The tour offered a remarkable insight and provided facts most Northerners are not aware of. For instance, 50 per cent of all Ontario canola and 20 per cent of all Ontario oats are grown in Northern Ontario," Fedeli said.
The facility also performs research specific to Northern Ontario in the areas of beef, agronomy, and horticulture.
A spud lab provides disease-free seed potatoes, strawberries, raspberries, and garlic, which end up at growers throughout Ontario.
Fedeli said the research identifies crops that grow well in Northern Ontario and the growing techniques are refined. This includes new crops earmarked for biofuel.
"The need is to develop partnerships to allow the research to continue. This will be achieved by bringing in more producer involvement," said Fedeli.
“Given that, I want to hear from others in the local agricultural community and ideas they may have regarding the facility’s future.”
Fedeli is accepting comments to his North Bay constituency office by phone (705- 474-8340), fax (705-474-9747) and email ([email protected])