Jasper Wyman & Son Canada Inc, known for its processing of wild blueberries, will receive more than $971,000 in funding under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, AgriInnovate Program.
An additionalrepayable contribution of $500,000 from the Atlantic Canada Opportunity Agency’s Business Development Program was announced July 26.
This funding will be used to install new equipment to more efficiently and precisely sort produce, while removing up to 99 per cent of defective berries. The project will help the company grow exports and sales, increase processing capacity, reduce water and energy consumption and hire additional staff.
The Government of Prince Edward Island will provide a $194,000 grant through Innovation PEI to assist with the project.
“Our primary producers are the engine that drives the Prince Edward Island economy and Jasper Wyman & Son are one of the anchors of our blueberry industry,” said Matthew MacKay, PEI minister of economic growth, tourism and culture. “They provide a major boost to the local economy and important employment for the region. This project will put the company on the cutting edge of sorting technology and will improve efficiency for the operation.”
In 2018 blueberries were Canada's most valuable fruit export making up 58 per cent of total fruit exports with a farm gate value of more than $243 million.
Jasper Wyman & Son Canada Inc., including its parent company, makes up the second largest supplier of wild blueberries in the world. The company farms approximately 1,200 acres of wild blueberries in Canada.
Source: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada July 26, 2019 news release