Since its inception in 1922, the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair has been a gathering place for Canadian farmers, growers and producers to display their very best agricultural products. Fast forward to 2019, and The Royal has grown to become the largest indoor agricultural event in the world. Each year, this impressive event attracts, educates and entertains over 300,000 attendees.
Metro at The Royal
This year at The Royal, Metro launched Spotlight on local, a unique initiative that celebrates the best local food being grown, produced and manufactured in Ontario. At the Royal, Metro recreated a retail store, showcasing new and innovative products from across the province. A major component of the initiative included the Champions Showcase, where over 2500 exhibitors competed to be crowned for the best: butter tarts, butter, cheese, honey and beeswax, hot sauces, ice cream, jams & jellies, maple products, meat snacks, and pickles and preserves.
As part of Metro’s commitment to grow local business, they have implemented a plan called the Local Purchasing Policy. This policy aims to support local businesses, decrease carbon footprints, and improve local economies by sourcing products from Ontario companies. The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) shares a similar goal of growing Ontario sales in the retail and food service markets. OMAFRA’s Vendor Engagement Program assists in promoting locally sourced agri-food products, by connecting Metro with local producers. This year there was a record of 55 meetings between Ontario businesses and category buyers.
Learn more about The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair here: https://www.royalfair.org/
Learn more about Metro’s Spotlight on Local initiative here: https://www.metro.ca/en/products-to-discover/green-living/buy-local/royal-grand-champions