DURHAM: The Regional Municipality of Durham is looking to support local agri-food sector. businesses.
In a January 15th press release, the region’s economic development division announced they are launching a Local Food Business Retention and Expansion project.
According to the release, in the “the first quarter of 2018”, the project will see trained volunteers, conducting “confidential interviews with a variety of local agricultural businesses to understand needs, concerns and opportunities for producers, manufacturers, distributors, and food service providers within Durham Region.”
The release goes on to state “these survey responses will then be analyzed to identify opportunities to improve the local agri-food sector in Durham Region.”
Nancy Rutherford, the Region’s Manager of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, told The Standard, the project’s goals are to understand what these businesses challenges are and what their growth opportunities are.
Ms. Rutherford added that the goal is to have the interviews conducted by late March or early April.
The information will then be analyzed, and then goals and action plans will be developed. These actions will then be implemented and monitored.
“The Durham Region Local Food Business Retention and Expansion project is in co-operation with the rural economic development program, offered by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, which has been facilitated in numerous communities across Ontario,” the press release stated.
Ms. Rutherford said the local agri-food sector is “definitely growing and has a big presence in the region”, adding that her sense is, it will be a “strong employer.”
For more information on the project, contact Lisa MacKenzie, Agriculture Program Co-ordinator, at Agriculture@durham.ca , or 905-668-4113 ext. 2615.
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