The Ontario government will spend $25 million over three years to remove bottlenecks in the agri-food supply chain. This funding will support the industry investment in projects that help address the processing capacity shortage and increase the sector’s competitiveness and resilience against future disruptions.
“Agriculture and food processing are a driving force that help power the Ontario economy and will contribute to our recovery and prosperity,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.“ This strategic investment will not only boost capacity and competitiveness in Ontario’s agri-food processing sector, but it will also position the sector for long-term growth, create jobs, and promote economic opportunities for rural communities.”
Starting in 2021-22, the Strategic Agri-Food Processing Fund will provide grants of up to $3 million to agri-food processing businesses to invest in capital, equipment and technology. The initiative aims to increase processing capacity and productivity while also enhancing the food security of Ontarians.
Specific program details will be available upon the program’s launch in the spring of 2022.
Hamilton is home to over 120 food and beverage manufacturers and over 9,500 skilled workers across the agribussiness and food processing supply chain. Hamilton boasts of one of the largest regional food processing clusters having experienced 35 % growth in 10 years and generating $1Billion in economic activity.