By: The Working Forest Staff
WOODSTOCK — Premier Doug Ford and Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, met with farmers and agriculture organizations at Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show to discuss the current challenges faced by the agri-food industry, including ongoing trade disruptions.
“Sitting down with farmers, producers and business leaders in the sector gives us an important perspective into the challenges faced by the sector,” said Premier Ford. “With one out of 8 jobs in our province in agriculture, our government is committed to working with industry leaders to protect Ontario workers and support the industry during these trade disruptions.”
The Premier and Minister met with representatives of the pork, beef, chicken, egg, grain, aquaculture and many other agriculture sectors to hear directly from them about the issues impacting their industry.
“Ontario cares about the success of our province’s agri-food industry, and that includes working to regain trade market access for our farmers,” said Minister Hardeman. “Premier Ford’s participation in this agriculture roundtable meeting shows our government stands with Ontario’s hardworking farmers and agri-businesses.”
During the group’s discussion, Minister Hardeman updated participants on the province’s work to support the industry’s efforts to remain viable and secure new export markets.
Through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, the federal and provincial governments are investing up to $417 million to expand and innovate the agriculture sector in Ontario.
The Ontario government is also accepting applications for the Market Access Initiative, and strengthening trade with the United States, to help farmers succeed at home and around the world.
Meeting participants also raised the subjects of labour challenges, safeguarding biosecurity on farms from trespassers and compensation for those who have been impacted by trade disruptions.
Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show attracts approximately 40,000 visitors each year to explore agricultural advancements through interactive exhibits and demonstrations.
- Canada’s Outdoor Farm Show (COFS) promotes itself as a premier outdoor agricultural showcase that offers “one stop shopping” for farmers and highlights the most innovative and technologically advanced agricultural products and services available.
- The event attracts more than 40,000 attendees each year and features approximately 750 exhibitors showcasing products and services through interactive displays and live demonstrations of machinery, livestock, crops, niche markets and energy. Full event details are available at outdoorfarmshow.com.
- The Canadian Agricultural Partnership is a five-year, $3-billion commitment by Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial governments that supports the country’s agri-food and agri-products sectors.
- The Market Access Initiative will be delivered by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. For more information or to access the program materials and applications forms, visit omafra.gov.on.catoday, or call 1-877-424-1300.