Tag Archives: Agricultural Development

Growing the Agriculture and Food Innovation Ecosystem

Join the Agriculture and Economic Development Community of Practice on May 11 from 10 am – 11:30 am to hear about Ontario’s growing agriculture and food innovation ecosystem including presentations about several provincial and regional innovation initiatives including:

Economic development officers, planners and those involved in community economic development should join in and share how the agriculture and food innovation ecosystems can help your agriculture and food industry.

Ontario’s agriculture and food industries strive to meet an ever-increasing global demand for agricultural products. Ontario agriculture and food innovation projects are evolving and expanding to help people make new business ideas become reality.

Register for this Zoom meeting at: https://us06web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZArcOigrjgpGNCn-GbheDGA6MmmYql6LR9f After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) have coordinated the Agriculture and Economic Development Community of Practice – a free, online network to bring together economic development and planning professionals across Ontario interested in agricultural issues. The quarterly meeting topics will be based on relevant municipal policies, procedures and programming impacting the agricultural sector.

Agricultural Systems Portal – The Next Generation

Planners and Economic Developers will be interested in this demonstration of the next generation of the Agricultural Systems Portal. It has more than 90 mapping layers on the agri-food supply chain and easy access to economic data!  Jennifer Birchmore, Senior Geographic Information Specialist and Helma Geerts, Policy Advisor at OMAFRA will demonstrate this new web platform and lead a hands-on exercise for users on February 23.  

Continue reading Agricultural Systems Portal – The Next Generation

Recap of the Agri-Food Forum Keynote by Nikolas Badminton – Facing our Futures

Innovation & Resiliency was the theme of the 14th annual Municipal Agriculture Economic Development & Planning Forum that was co-hosted by the Regional Municipality of York and OMAFRA in early November 2021.

The Agri-Food Forum was kicked off with welcoming remarks from Minister Lisa Thompson, speaking on the importance of agri-food economic development and land use planning and the opportunities within innovation of the agri-food sector.

Continue reading Recap of the Agri-Food Forum Keynote by Nikolas Badminton – Facing our Futures

Register for the Canadian Women’s Agri-Food Virtual Trade Mission to Mexico Tuesday, March 22nd -24th 2022

The Organization of Women in International Trade-Toronto (OWIT)* in collaboration with Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) is hosting a virtual trade mission to Mexico.

The mission is focused on increasing exports of Canadian women-owned and women-led businesses in the agri-food sector to enter or expand into the Mexican market.

The mission will allow participants to better understand and tap into Mexico’s business opportunities by taking part in information webinar sessions, and pre-arranged virtual business-to-business meetings.

Mexico is one of the largest importers of agri-food products in the world. A country with a population of more than 130 million people imports approximately 40% of what is consumed. In 2020, it imported US$28 billion in agriculture and Agri-food products. Mexico is Canada’s third most important trading partner and a strategic trade partner in two key trade agreements, CUSMA and CPTPP.

With the geographical advantage and the Free Trade Agreements that have eliminated duties on almost all agri-food products, Mexico is a natural market for Canadian exporters.

Participants will get:
  • Pre-arranged virtual B2B meetings with qualified buyers
  • Digital Catalogue with company listing in Spanish
  • Assistance by OMAFRA, GAC and OWIT
Program details and dates:

February (dates TBC)

  • Pre-event market information webinar sessions by experts and Trade Commissioner Service-Canada

March 22

  • Prospective from Mexican industry leaders and buyers’ Pre-arranged virtual business-to-business meetings with qualified buyers or partners
  • Virtual business-to-business meetings

March 23

  • Virtual business-to-business meetings

March 24

  • Virtual business-to-business meetings
  • Debriefing with participants
Participation fee:
  • OWIT Members – $150
  • Non-Members – $250

Spaces are Limited! Deadline to register is January 15th, 2022!

Register Now: owit-toronto.ca

For questions and inquiries please contact Fabiola Sicard, Export Marketing Officer, OMAFRA at Fabiola.sicard@ontario.ca or by telephone (647) 205-7133.

*OWIT promotes trade diversification and the participation of women in international trade which contributes to Canada’s economic growth.

Growing Agri-Tourism Initiatives in Your Community

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

2020 Ontario Regional Economic Development: A Year In Review

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

Recap: Always in Season Community of Practice Session

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

Municipal Agriculture Economic Development & Planning Forum – Registration now open

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

Day One

Continue reading Municipal Agriculture Economic Development & Planning Forum – Registration now open

Growing Agriculture with Northern Ontario Community Pastures

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.

Table 1

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Table 2 






Authored by Barry Potter and Kaitlyn Schenk



Ontario Wildlife Damage Compensation Program – Claim Requirements

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