New Funding Intake To Support Food & Beverage Businesses

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Exhibit at The 165th Bayfield Fair held last week by the local agricultural society of Huron & Bruce. Pic: Lisa Thompson

BLYTH : The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing up to $6 million in projects to help Ontario food and beverage processors improve their operations, increase their competitive edge and adapt to challenges as we move beyond the pandemic.

Applications for this program will be accepted in two phases. Applications for the first phase of this new intake under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership to support projects that will enhance economic development and food safety in the sector are now being accepted.

The second phase of the intake will open next month for targeted projects to improve labour productivity, efficiency and reduce waste.

“Our processors have risen to the challenges caused by the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the Marie-Claude Bibeau, federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

“We are confident this investment will help them make their businesses stronger and improve food safety during these challenging times. A robust agrifood processing sector is vital to our economy and we recognize all they do to provide Canadians with quality food and beverages.”

“This funding builds on several measures we’ve already taken to ensure the sector maintains a strong food supply chain that delivers safe, nutritious and highquality food to Ontario families,” said Lisa Thompson, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

Some examples of projects eligible for support under the first phase of applications for food and beverage processors include:

• implementing new technology to improve food safety

• developing new products to increase sales

• improving animal health through preventing the introduction and spread of disease throughout an operation This new intake builds on other supports extended to the province’s food processing and agrifood sector during COVID-19.

Examples of such recent initiatives include:

• a more than $7 million investment to boost production and capacity in the meat processing sector under the Meat Processors Capacity Improvement Initiative

• a $2.25 million investment in provincially licensed meat processing plants to better protect employees and Ontario’s food supply under the Agri-food Workplace Protection Program

• a $22 million provincial investment to increase the adoption of technological innovations within the agri-food sector to enhance the health and safety of workers and improve the sector’s efficiency and productivity through the Agri-Tech Innovation Program Since June 2018, both the federal and provincial governments have committed over $100 million in cost-share support to more than 5,000 projects through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership to help Ontario farmers, processors, businesses and sector organizations innovate and grow.

• The Canadian Agricultural Partnership is a five-year, $3 billion investment by federal, provincial and territorial governments to strengthen the agriculture and agri-food sector, ensuring continued innovation and prosperity. This commitment includes $2 billion for programs that are cost-shared by the federal and provincial and territorial governments and are designed and delivered by provinces and territories.

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