WGRF currently has five sources of funds that are used to invest in Western Canadian field crop research.

  • Reserve Wheat Check-off Funds
  • Reserve Barley Check-off Funds
  • Endowment Fund
  • Royalties
  • Third Party Funds

Wheat and Barley check-offs

The Western Canadian Deduction (WCD) ended on July 31, 2017. The WCD was a federal initiative that was put in place during the five-year transition to a new research and market development model in Western Canada. The provincial wheat and barley commissions and associations have assumed responsibility for the consolidation of the WCD into their respective checkoffs.

WGRF will remain invested in wheat and barley variety development through its ongoing agreements with research organizations developing new varieties and ongoing use of royalty funds. WGRF has made funding commitments out to 2020 utilizing wheat and barley reserve funds. These investments have the full support of the provincial commissions and associations and ensure the stability of core breeding programs at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, University of Alberta, University of Saskatchewan and the University of Manitoba.

For more information on changes to the wheat and barley check-offs, please contact your provincial wheat and/or barley commission.

WGRF Endowment Fund

In 1981, the federal government turned over nine million producer dollars from the discontinued Prairie Farm Assistance Act (PFAA).This funding became the base of the Endowment Fund.

The principal of the Endowment Fund is invested and the earnings are used to fund a wide variety of crop research. By managing the fund in this way, WGRF is looking to the long-term stability of crop research in Western Canada.

Valued at over $120 million, the WGRF Endowment Fund is large enough to have a significant impact on western Canadian agriculture. Research expenditures via the Endowment Fund provide WGRF with an opportunity to enhance the profitability and sustainability of producers in western Canada.

In 2000, the Federal Government named WGRF under the Canada Transportation Act as the organization to receive funds deemed to be in excess of the maximum revenue entitlements allowed for Canadian Pacific Railway Company (CP) and the Canadian National Railway Company (CN). The excess fund plus a five percent penalty are paid into the WGRF Endowment Fund.

As a producer I would prefer that the railways stay below their maximum revenue entitlements; however, when these entitlements are exceeded WGRF and its Board of Directors will invest these funds into field crop research to the benefit of all western Canadian farmers.

Dave Sefton, WGRF Board Chair


As part of its funding agreements with AAFC and the universities, WGRF receives a share of the royalties generated by wheat and barely varieties that were developed with check-off fundin g support.

Third Party Funding   

WGRF administers programs within Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Growing Forward program framework (Cluster 1: April 2010 to March 2013) and (Cluster 2: April 1, 2013 to March 31, 2018). Under this Program, WGRF acts as an administrator and treats third party funds as revenue, prior to payments to participating research institutions.