The Province has announced a pilot partnership involving Innovation Saskatchewan (IS), Wabash Heartland Innovation Network (WHIN), and Cultivator powered by Conexus (Cultivator).
The new collaboration is expected to support agricultural technology development and economic growth.
The pilot partnership will establish an important connection to a significant market in the U.S. grain belt and help accelerate the commercialization and adoption of Saskatchewan agtech technologies through field trials with WHIN's Ag Alliance members.
The Minister Responsible for Innovation Saskatchewan Jeremy Harrison says Saskatchewan's agtech sector is a major driver of growth in the provincial economy.
"This pilot partnership will accelerate agtech research and development and help attract new high-growth companies to Saskatchewan."
WHIN has an extensive network of agricultural producers and manufacturers throughout 10 north-central Indiana counties and will help formalize and operationalize this farmer network to foster more field trial and validation opportunities for Saskatchewan agtech companies.
WHIN CEO Johnny Park says they are incredibly excited to be partnering with Innovation Saskatchewan and Cultivator.
"This partnership is a vital connection to Canadian agtech companies looking to offer their products in the U.S. market, which allows us to increase the flow of technology into the WHIN region for pilot tests and accelerated adoption by the WHIN farmers."
Cultivator Incubator Manager Jordan McFarlen says by leveraging the expertise and resources provided by CEO Johnny Park and the team at WHIN, we can provide vital support and opportunities for Canadian agtech startups to pursue field trials and validation in the U.S. market, ultimately driving economic growth and job creation for Saskatchewan and Canada as a whole.
This strategy complements Cultivator's goals of accelerating agtech through its AGTECH Accelerator program and Million Acres project, which is developing a farmer network across the province and country that represents a collective of one million acres of farmland.
Overall, Innovation Saskatchewan, WHIN, and Cultivator will work together with existing agricultural infrastructure in the province to help support early-stage agtech startups, create a pipeline for future investments, help stimulate the provincial economy, and triple the technology sector, all of which the province identified as important objectives in Saskatchewan's Growth Plan 2020-30.