Federal Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay has completed the first leg of a 10-day European agricultural trade mission in Cologne, Germany.

As part of his efforts to build on the momentum of the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA)’s provisional application, MacAulay was at ANUGA, the largest food and beverage show in the world, where he met with Canadian exhibitors and participated in a networking event to facilitate new trade opportunities.

"This agricultural trade mission underscores the Government of Canada's commitment to promoting market opportunities abroad and encouraging investment to create good, well-paying jobs to grow our middle class," said MacAulay. "The trade links established by Canadian companies and exporters of agricultural products here in Europe are vital to expanding and diversifying export markets for Canada’s safe, high-quality agriculture and agri-food products."

Canadian industry representatives reported qualifying more than 2,500 leads, over 35 percent of which they believe will lead to future business. In terms of sales, industry representatives reported some $31.7 million in on-site sales, and $321.9 million in anticipated sales, over the next year.

Canadian industry estimates CETA will boost agriculture and agri-food exports by up to $1.5 billion annually.

MacAulay continues his mission Wednesday and Thursday in Belgium, where he will meet with European Union officials as well as lead business meetings with European agricultural importers in Brussels, before departing to Antwerp, where he will tour the city’s sea port.

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