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Funding will improve food safety and productivity

SIMCOE: The Governments of Canada and Ontario are providing more than $5.4 million through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership to help food processing businesses improve food safety, increase labour productivity and enable better access to markets. These strategic investments will support more than 75 projects across Ontario and strengthen the province’s crucial agri-food supply chain. “Targeted investments into the innovation of our food processors, such as these, ensure our food supply chain remains strong and competitive for years to come,” said Neil Ellis, Member of Parliament for Bay of Quinte and Parliamentary Secretary to the federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. “This is about serving our communities from both levels of government, helping to give a boost to our local food businesses and address some of the challenges around labour we are seeing right now.” Some specific types of projects supported through this programming include: Implementing technology or other systems, to improve food safety; Transitioning to automated, advanced manufacturing and/or robotic processing technology, to enhance labour productivity; Developing new products or processes, to increase sales. A list of approved projects is posted online: “Our food processors are an integral part of our province’s economic recovery from this outbreak,” said the Honourable Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “By investing in this sector, we are helping our homegrown processors become more competitive, more innovative and better positioned to keep supplying safe, quality foods for domestic and international markets.” The Partnership is also investing in programs this year at provincially inspected dairy processors and provincially licensed meat processors, to support food safety enhancement projects. These are in addition to new programming launched this year, like the Agri-food Workplace Protection Program, to assist the sector in protecting its workers from the COVID-19 outbreak. Since June 2018, both the federal and provincial governments have committed cost-share support to more than 2,500 projects through the Partnership, to help eligible Ontario farmers, processors, businesses and sector organizations innovate and grow.

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