Join other professionals on Thursday, August 19, 2021 for the Agriculture Economic Development and Planning Community of Practice discussion on Agri-tourism.
Agri-tourism is a rural based industry in Ontario with growth potential. To help unlock that potential, Simcoe County recognized that prospective operators might need guidance to help navigate through the process of starting an agri-tourism component on the farm. Simcoe County worked with TCI Management Consultants, and Wilton Consulting Group to develop a toolkit for farmers who would like to start or expand their agritourism operation in Simcoe County. The toolkit contains all the information people need to help decide whether agri-tourism is right for them.
Continue reading Growing Agri-Tourism Initiatives in Your Community
If your community is looking for ways to support your local agriculture sector; consider attending the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) online Agriculture Economic Development Training.
The course is split into two sessions and registration is free.
- Tuesday April 27, 10am – 11:30am
- Tuesday May 4, 10am – 11:30am
This interactive training will:
Continue reading Registration Open: Online Agriculture Economic Development Training
2020 has been an incredibly unique and unforgettable year, it’s also been a great year for the ON Regional Economic Development blog website. We’ve expanded our range of topics and have enjoyed watching our follow numbers grow. Below is a recap of our most popular blogs for 2020.
1. Top Ten Impacts COVID-19 Is Having on Local Economic Development and Ways That Economic Developers Can Help – April 23, 2020
Impacts of COVID-19 on local communities has left economic developers seeking guidance on how to best respond to the outbreak and offer effective support measures. This blog post discusses a ten-point action plan for how economic developer organizations can work through a three-phase recovery.
Continue reading 2020 Ontario Regional Economic Development: A Year In Review
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
The 9th annual Municipal Agriculture Economic Development & Planning Forum is being held in Halton Region on October 18-19, 2017.
The forum is tailored to all those involved in municipal economic development and planning who have agriculture and food in their portfolio. Whether it’s farming, food processing, agri-tourism, equine, or agri-entrepreneurship in focus, this is an opportunity to network and share successes with your colleagues. We’ve prepared two jam-packed days of tours and speakers to showcase the experiences and insights of agri-businesses in the Halton Region and beyond.
Registration is now open – click here
Continue reading Municipal Agriculture Economic Development & Planning Forum – Registration now open
There are six community pastures located across northern Ontario. Partnerships between organizations and the provincial government were instrumental in the formation of the pastures. In the early 2000’s the Association of Community Pastures (ACP) was created and they subsequently ownership of some of these pastures. The pastures are available for farmers to rent for the summer, allowing them to increase their herd by providing extra grazing opportunities. Community pastures are also used as sites for research and information workshops.
Economic benefits of community pastures
Since the first community pasture was established in the early 1960’s, they have come to provide a source of economic benefit to the communities where they are located. To see what kind of overall benefit community pastures have for the northern Ontario, data was collected for all six of the pastures in 2016.
Charges for using the pasture is done in one of two ways; either a flat rate per animal/animal pairs for the season, or a per-day rate. Table 1 shows the number of animals at each location and the rental rates charged in 2016.
It is clear that there is consistent positive revenue being generated by the northern community pastures. Overall the pastures benefit communities by providing jobs and allowing farmers an opportunity to increase the livestock they raise and subsequently increase their revenues.
Table 2 highlights the overall financial impact of the community pastures in 2016 (based on the assumption that the sale of Cow/Calf pairs and bulls to be $1200 and sale of yearlings to be $1500), which also generates jobs, and benefits the local economy.
In summary, community pastures demonstrate economic benefits by contributing to local research, and positively impacting the economy though the generation of profit from hosting the cattle on pasture, generating jobs, and increasing a farmers revenue opportunities.
Authored by Barry Potter and Kaitlyn Schenk
Generating more than $5.2 billion in direct sales annually (not including value added or further processing), the livestock industry is an important contributor to the strength of Ontario’s economy.
One of the challenges with raising livestock in rural and remote areas is predation by wildlife.
The Ontario Wildlife Damage Compensation Program compensates producers for livestock losses incurred as a result of predation. Municipalities appoint Livestock Valuers to inspect and prepare a report on any livestock losses from wildlife. In unincorporated areas of Ontario, the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Agriculture Development Advisors do this.
In preparation for making a claim, producers are encouraged to: Continue reading Ontario Wildlife Damage Compensation Program – Claim Requirements
Northern Ontario, with its cooler growing conditions, is known to grow good quality forages and spring grains. However, the past three decades has seen a diversification and expansion of the cash crop sector in the north.
With fewer livestock farms in the north, resulting in fewer acres of forages being grown (less livestock, less feed required) and the expansion of overall farm acreage, producers have been looking at different crop alternatives. Continue reading Diversifying the Cash Crop Industry in Northern Ontario
Need Help to Start, Manage or Grow a Food Business? If so, the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) offers many resources to individuals and businesses starting or growing a food processing business.
A good place to start is with the 2015 Guide To Food And Beverage Manufacturing in Ontario. Whether you are new to the food industry and working on a business start-up or need assistance with the expansion of an existing operation, you will find the information in this guide and its easy-to-follow tools and templates will help you: Continue reading Need Help to Start, Manage or Grow a Food Business?
The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) is leading the development of the Northern Ontario Agriculture, Aquaculture and Food Processing sector strategy.
Agriculture, Aquaculture and Food Processing is a priority sector that can help grow and diversify Northern Ontario’s economy under the Growth Plan for Northern Ontario,
OMAFRA needs input from a broad array of producers, organizations and communities to create an effective strategy which will guide long term decision-making and investment planning in Northern Ontario.
The discussion paper is a first step in the development of this strategy. We look forward to having a dialogue on the questions presented in the discussion paper and other comments and ideas that may arise.
How to Comment on the Discussion Paper
Interested parties may provide input into the development of the Strategy in a number of ways.
Provide comments in writing through one of the following:
- Ontario’s Environmental Registry – EBR Registry Number 012-7458.:
- By email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
- By delivery to any OMAFRA office
- By mail/courier to:
Economic Development Policy Branch
1 Stone Road West
2nd Floor NE
5. By Fax: (510) 826-4328
attention: Economic Development Policy Branch
To obtain an electronic version of this discussion paper, please go to OMAFRA’s website.
Written comments must be submitted by July 3, 2016.
OMAFRA will provide participants with overall summaries of both consultations and submitted written comments by the public. Your input towards the Northern Ontario Agriculture, Aquaculture and Food Processing sector strategy will positively impact the economic viability and advancement of Northern Ontario and the province as a whole.