Initiative to recover agricultural plastics launched

MRC Pontiac launches pilot project on its territory

Thierry Raimbault (left) and Lynn Leavitt (right), the designer of the Pac-It press. Mr. Leavitt is a beef producer in Picton, Ontario.

Thanks to a financial contribution of $113,000 from the Desjardins GoodSpark Fund, the MRC Pontiac will launch a pilot project for the recovery of agricultural plastics on its territory as of spring 2021.

“This 3-year project is part of the MRC Pontiac’s approach to reduce the amount of residual materials sent to landfill. It responds to the desire of Pontiac’s agricultural businesses to reduce the environmental impacts of their activities,” explains Thierry Raimbault, environmental coordinator for the MRC Pontiac.

During phase 1 of the project, some fifteen pre-chosen agricultural businesses will receive a press specially developed for baling agricultural plastics intended for the conservation of forage plants. Among them, beef producer Rick Younge of Clarendon, one of the instigators of the project, believes that this initiative is beneficial for both the environment and the agricultural community “in order to change the public’s perception of agriculture,” says Younge.

Recovered plastics will then be recycled or sent for energy recovery in collaboration with CleanFarms, a non- profit environmental stewardship organization. “It is by working with local stakeholders and studying collection methods elsewhere in the province of Québec that the MRC and its partners have come up with this pilot project. Eventually, a total of 45 agricultural businesses will be able to join the project,” says Nolwenn Beaumont, project coordinator in green economy at the Conseil régional en environnement et développement durable de l’Outaouais (CREDDO).

This project is conducted in collaboration with the CREDDO and the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPAQ). It is also financed by MAPAQ within the framework of component 2 of the Prime-Vert program.

Farm businesses interested in learning more or possibly in joining the project during phases 2 and 3 can write to: [email protected].

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