Developing Canada’s Hemp Sector - InnoTech Alberta

Posted on: May 18, 2021

Jan Slaski, PhD, Researcher, Bio Industrial Services, InnoTech Alberta

NEWS RELEASE

InnoTech Alberta signs distribution agreement with UniSeeds Inc.

VEGREVILLE, AB, May 18, 2021 – InnoTech Alberta (InnoTech) a subsidiary of Alberta Innovates, is breeding, developing, and enhancing a new hemp seed variety known as Silesia . InnoTech signed a distribution agreement with UniSeeds Inc. to sell the enhanced Silesia variety of hemp seeds. Silesia is a seed variety approved by Health Canada and the distribution agreement commercializes InnoTech’s innovation in its enhancement.

Silesia is ideal for Canadian growing conditions and offers the agriculture sector exceptional fibre production and seed-quantity compared to other cultivars. Hemp fibre can be used to make low-carbon building materials and can also readily replace wood fibre in pulp, paper and packaging production.

InnoTech has been developing Silesia since 2009. Through a concentrated breeding program, InnoTech has enhanced Silesia to produce a variety of hemp that is both high in seed-yield and produces the highest quality of fibrous hemp, when compared to its competitors. InnoTech has also improved the disease resistance of Silesia.

InnoTech Alberta’s Bio-Industrial Services Division features crop research teams working to support Alberta’s agriculture industry. InnoTech helps the sector develop and validate various crop varieties, including hemp and cannabis, for disease resistance and tolerance to stress like drought and cold. InnoTech utilizes a variety of infrastructure and expertise to process harvested hemp and other fibres into unique materials ranging from new textiles to composite panels used in the automotive and construction industry.

“Alberta’s government is committed to attracting $1.4 billion in new value-added investments. Hemp will play a vital role in reaching that target as the sector continues to gain momentum. Through innovation farmers will have access to hemp seeds proven in Alberta’s growing conditions making our agriculture sector even more competitive.”

Minister Devin Dreeshen, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry

“InnoTech Alberta has been at the forefront of hemp research and innovation. This agreement is an example of how they support and advance the emerging hemp fibre industry in Alberta.”

Laura Kilcrease, CEO, Alberta Innovates

“InnoTech Alberta’s agreement with UniSeeds validates the work we’ve engaged in to bolster the Agriculture sector through innovation. The distribution arrangement will allow hemp producers in Alberta, Canada, and around the world to grow a superior product and create revenue through its commercialization.”

Steve McMahon, COO, InnoTech Alberta 

BACKGROUND

InnoTech Alberta has over one million square feet of research and lab space and 600 acres of farmland to enable accelerated technology research, development, and deployment for our clients. InnoTech’s research facilities range from bench scale and greenhouses to pilots, demonstrations and near-commercial scale.

InnoTech Alberta
InnoTech Alberta is a leading research and technology organization serving the needs of industry, entrepreneurs and the public sector. Our leading-edge expertise and industrial-scale research and demonstration facilities accelerate and de-risk technology development and deployment with a focus on industrial solutions and commercial application. We are Alberta’s innovation engine with 100 years of bold ideas that feed, grow, fuel, and build Alberta’s agriculture, energy, environment, and forestry sectors. Visit us at: InnoTechAlberta.ca.

UniSeeds Inc.
UniSeeds is a Canadian hemp seed company based in Eastern Ontario that develops, multiplies and commercializes proprietary and third-party hemp genetics to North American hemp growers. UniSeeds has a vast experience in the hemp space being able to offer hemp cultivars and expertise for all key hemp market segments including grain, fiber and CBD. For more information, visit www.uniseeds.ca. For inquiries contact Mark Lahti: markl@uniseeds.ca.