Poultry, egg farmers now able to access compensation dollars

The program includes $647 million stretched over 10 years to help producers remain competitive, and is part of the government's compensation for negotiating away parts of the supply managed markets. | File photo

Applications for the Poultry and Egg On-Farm Investment Program (PEFIP) are now being accepted.

The program includes $647 million stretched over 10 years to help producers remain competitive, and is part of the government’s compensation for negotiating away parts of the supply managed markets.

Producers are entitled to a dollar amount based on their quota holdings at the start of 2021, and they can apply until the end of March 2030.

Projects eligible for cost-shared funding will be “anything that helps a producer modernize, become more competitive and adapt to changing consumer preferences,” for which the program will provide up to 70 percent of the cost.

For young producers — that is, age 35 or younger as of Jan. 1, 2021 — that ratio will run up to 85 percent.

The 10-year time frame to apply is meant to allow farmers flexibility, with the logic being producers will apply for the funding when they are ready to invest.

If applicants outnumber the amount of money available for the program in a specific year, payments may be delayed to other years.

The program will also consider eligible costs retroactive to the announcement of support for supply-managed sectors made on March 19, 2019, in that year’s federal budget, but federal officials caution not all previously completed projects are likely to be approved.

“Our government is delivering on its commitment to compensate supply-managed farmers for the impacts of recent trade agreements. This program, which launches today, will help Canadian poultry and egg producers be more competitive and make their facilities even more sustainable,” said Minister of Agriculture Marie-Claude Bibeau in a statement.

The money represents the compensation paid to the supply-managed industry for negotiating away part of the domestic market in Canada, through the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).

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