Canada’s Minister of Agriculture Strengthens Food Security and Partnerships

Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau met with Philippine government officials, business leaders, civil society groups and other stakeholders from agriculture and agri-food industries and organizations local.

During her two-day visit to Manila, September 25-26, Ms. Bibeau sought to increase cooperation, expand trade and investment, and promote Canadian agri-food products and solutions.

“Over the past few years, Canada and the Philippines have enjoyed a healthy trade relationship in the area of ​​agri-food and seafood,” said the Minister. “[We kept our] borders opened up during the pandemic and continuously exported quality food and feed products that complemented our domestic food production industries and contributed to global food security.

The Philippines has now become Canada’s second largest agri-food and seafood export market in Southeast Asia. In 2021, the latter’s exports increased by more than 64% to reach more than 567 million Canadian dollars compared to 2020. Agri-food and seafood products accounted for approximately 35% of the North American country’s total shipments. , making its ASEAN partner the second export market for poultry, the fifth for pork. , and eighth for beef.

Meanwhile, the Philippines’ agrifood exports, which include coconuts, pineapples, dried mangoes, seafood like tuna and processed foods, have been steadily increasing even throughout the pandemic.

“We are committed to elevating this relationship even further and exploring ways that Canada can contribute to the Philippines’ agri-food sector by being a reliable partner in food security,” the Canadian government official explained.

During her visit, Ms. Bibeau met with delegates from the Ministry of Agriculture, local meat importers, as well as other agri-food importers in retail, milling and wheat.

She also visited the first Tim Horton’s restaurant to open in the country.

Throughout her visit, the Minister reiterated Canada’s commitment to advancing agricultural trade and cooperation and expanding market access.

Canada shares priorities and interests with the Philippines, as expressed by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. in recent statements, including the fight against climate change, food security and the preservation of fragile environments.

“[We recognize] the impact of climate change on Philippine agriculture, food security and poverty alleviation,” Bibeau said during his meeting with Principal Undersecretary for Agriculture Domingo Panganiban. “We are committed to supporting interventions that promote increased agricultural growth, while adopting climate-smart and gender-responsive approaches.”

The minister also expressed her condolences and best wishes to the survivors of supertyphoon “Karding” (international name noru), which hit Central Luzon last month.