Research network to allocate $15 million in first open call for proposals

The research network is accepting proposals for projects that will advance automation and digital technology in the agri-food sector.

The Canadian Agri-Food Automation and Intelligence Network (CAAIN) is looking for projects that will accelerate the adoption of smart agriculture practices in Canada.

CAAIN will allocate up to $15 million in its first open call for proposals, focusing on automation and digital technology that will help advance the agri-food sector and “demonstrate economic impact and value for Canada’s agri-food industry,” notes a media release from the group.  The release adds that technology such as blockchain, artificial intelligence, advanced sensor and automation are “changing the face of modern farming.” Applicants may be eligible industry partners, non-profits or academic institutions. Projects must have at least two small- and medium-sized enterprise partners.

Project registration forms must be submitted by 2:00 pm MDT on December 1, 2020. For more information on project eligibility and other conditions of the competition, visit

CAAIN comprises universities, colleges, research institutes and companies. The Government of Canada’s Strategic Innovation Fund put out a call for funding proposals in automation and digital technology in agriculture and agri-food, spurring the network’s creation. The network was launched in July 2019 with a mandate to bring together technology and agri-food companies to improve competitiveness, drive growth in both sectors and create jobs.

Core partners include Alberta Innovates, the Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, Olds College, MDA Systems Ltd., Linamar Corp., Lakeland College, DOT Technology Corporation, and TrustBIX. Several other private businesses and research institutions are also part of the network.

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