The 12th annual Municipal Agriculture Economic Development & Planning Forum took place on November 18-19, 2020. The forum showcased exciting agricultural and rural projects happening in Huron County and throughout Ontario. Ways to engage and grow agriculture along the value chain, and opportunities for planning and economic development were highlighted to the more than 230 people in attendance.
Energetic discussions explored topics such as export as a growth strategy, direct selling in a COVID world, inspiring innovation within a municipality and more!
The forum focused on working together to grow a better future for the Agri-Food sector. Whether you want to:
- Promote local food
- Brand your region
- Support export initiatives
- Drive innovation in your region
Listed below are several tools and resources to support your work. Visit these links for more information:
Continue reading Recap – Municipal Agriculture, Economic Development & Planning Forum
Ontario’s government is helping to grow the province’s agri-food and agri-products sectors by launching the Place to Grow: Agri-food Innovation Initiative – a program which will help drive innovation, reduce red tape, and address industry priorities. The “Funding for Sectors” stream and will support agriculture and food value-chain partners in address emerging sector challenges and opportunities to create sector wide benefits.
This cost-share intake will remain open until November 26, 2020.
FUNDING FOR SECTORS
Funding supports agriculture and food value chain partners by offering cost-share funding opportunities to address identified industry priorities and outcomes for Ontario in the following areas:
Continue reading Funding For Sectors Intake NOW Open
Registration is now open for the FREE Selling Food to Ontario Training Workshop, brought to you by collaboration between OMAFRA, York Region, and the Town of Georgina!
Looking to learn more about different sales channels, how they work and how to decide which channel(s) may be best for business? This webinar will help you create new opportunities for your farm or food business by learning how to expand into new markets such as farmers’ markets, restaurants, food service, and food retailers.
This webinar is best suited for farmers, producers, food & beverage start-ups, small food & beverage manufacturers and food business retailers/restaurants.
The webinar will take place on Thursday, November 5th, 2020 (8:45am-12:30pm), and participants will hear from expert speaker on the topics of:
Continue reading Registration open – Selling Food to Ontario Training Workshop
Registration is now open – select one of the following registration links below to sign up for the Forum
The 12th annual Municipal Agriculture Economic Development & Planning Forum is being hosted virtually by Huron County on November 18-19, 2020. Two half days of sessions will be supplemented with a virtual tour of Huron County and some of its most exciting agricultural and rural projects.
If your portfolio includes rural planning, economic development or any aspect of the agriculture sector – food, farming, ag value chain businesses, workforce attraction, or agricultural innovation you won’t want to miss the 2020 Forum. The Forum will be of interest to municipal economic developers, planners, council members, CAO’s, and supporters of local economic development initiatives. The Forum looks at leading edge collaborations and innovations to grow the ag sector and your community. Two days of sessions cover a wide range of timely topics including:
Continue reading Register Now – 2020 Virtual Municipal Agriculture, Economic Development & Planning Forum
On August 20, 2020 the Agriculture Economic Development and Planning Community of Practice webinar highlighted the new Always in Season Toolkit. Participants heard how different communities have introduced initiatives to help strengthen their agri-food sector.
The Always in Season toolkit is designed to help guide communities through potential activities, key performance metrics, funding opportunities, and ways to collaborate to support the agri-food sector. The toolkit is available in both French and English and provides resources for community organizations and municipalities to help them strengthen the role of local food in the community. The toolkit shows users how to:
Continue reading Recap: Always in Season Community of Practice Session
In 2020, Teeny Tiny Summits will be moving to a virtual format featuring a series of three webinars. The virtual Teeny Tiny webinars will shine a light on creative ideas and people in small communities that have made the most of the past few months. The webinar series will be sharing ideas and actions from community leaders in small communities of all kinds for informative and inspiring sessions.
Continue reading Teeny Tiny Summit Goes Virtual! Big Ideas for Small Places: A celebration and Exploration of Small-Town Possibilities
The Rural Ontario Institute has created a Rural Rebound sharing platform that showcases encouraging stories and positive examples drawn from across rural Ontario. This online platform offers case studies about creative solutions from community and non profit organizations, businesses, and entrepreneurs. These stories share a common theme of effective leadership and collaboration. The platform is also a source of reliable up-to-date information on local and regional government efforts, funding and grant opportunities, research findings, webinar links and more.
Below are a few great case studies shared on the platform:
Continue reading Stories That Demonstrate Rural Renaissance
The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) recognizes the unique workforce challenges and opportunities agri-sector employers are faced with. Through Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding, OFA is rapidly developing a support system for agriculture and food employers from field to fork, to feed Ontario’s future. This project will help employers seek qualified candidates for planting, harvesting, processing, marketing, researching, and selling Ontario’s healthy, high-quality food, beverage and agri-products.
Enhancing agri-food workforce readiness along the value chain will help strengthen the Ontario agri-food sector during COVID-19 and beyond. This project will address agri-food labour supply and training challenges through the inclusion of:
Continue reading Feeding Your Future – Connecting Ontario’s Agri-Food Workforce: Online Community of Practice Webinar
Guest blog written by Emily Potter, Executive Director, NOFIA
With the current COVID-19 situation changing daily, challenges that farmers were facing prior to the outbreak have escalated, and new challenges are being presented week by week. While the general public are expressing concerns about the food supply, farmers want the public to know that they will not stop producing safe and healthy food for them to consume. Despite mounting challenges, Ontario’s agriculture and agri-food industry is resilient and innovative.
Industry organizations everywhere have been working hard to provide up-to-date information and create tools to ensure farmers and producers can continue to meet the country’s demand. Whether this be releasing practical tools and information, developing support programs, or working with the government to ensure the supply chain is maintained.
Continue reading Growing in a COVID-19 World
The Rural Ontario Institute has created a Young Rural Change Makers pilot program that invites young adults to develop their community leadership capacity to make a difference in their rural community. This program is open to individuals ages 18-29 that currently reside in rural Ontario.
Up to 30 motivated young adults will be selected by application to join the program. The chosen individuals will participate in a series of developmental training webinars that will foster online connections for a customized, experiential event. This will support them to take action on a challenge/opportunity that they have helped their community to select. Additional personalized coaching will take place, as-needed, either in-person, phone or via email.
Continue reading Young Rural Change Makers Program