Government of Canada invests over $400,000 in Northern Ontario’s Agriculture Innovation Ecosystem 

News release

FedNor funding will help support agri-food producers and organizations innovate, expand and create jobs across the region

August 12, 2022 – Sudbury, Ontario

Canadian farmers and agri-food producers are contributing to their community’s food security and vitality. By investing in innovative technology to increase production, the government of Canada is giving them access to the tools they need to maximize production, increasing food supply, and boosting economic growth. Innovation is essential to making this a reality, which is why the government is working closely with producers and organizations to help them create jobs and increase production.

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, was in Sudbury today to announce a FedNor investment of $407,195 in support of agri-food business innovation and expansion in Northern Ontario. The announcement was made on behalf of the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for FedNor. Viviane Lapointe, Member of Parliament for Sudbury, and Marc G. Serré, Member of Parliament for Nickel Belt and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Official Languages also participated in the event.

A FedNor contribution from the Regional Economic Growth through Innovation (REGI) program will enable the Northern Ontario Farm Innovation Alliance (NOFIA) to grow the region's Innovation Ecosystem leading to business expansion, innovation, exports, job creation, and the growth of the agricultural sector. Guided by its industry-based committee, NOFIA will advance agricultural research and innovation in Northern Ontario through market and infrastructure development and applied research tailored to the needs of farmers’ operations. NOFIA will continue to serve as a coordinating body, strengthening linkages and building or expanding clusters to increase commercialization and enhance productivity within farming enterprises. Twenty full-time jobs are expected to be created and 40 existing positions maintained. Once fully implemented, this strategic initiative is also expected to help expand or modernize more than 150 existing and create an additional six new businesses, forming and maintaining approximately 150 new important strategic alliances in the agricultural and agri-processing sector. 

NOFIA will also organize a series of sector workshops, training sessions and Farm Day events across the region, as well as continue to host the annual Northern Ontario Ag Conference that brings together producers and researchers to share their research and best practices in agriculture.

Quotes

“Across Northern Ontario, farmers and agri-food producers are working tirelessly to ensure a stable food supply for their communities. By investing in the Northern Ontario Farm Innovation Alliance, our Government is helping to drive innovation that will contribute to increasing food production at a time when feeding Canada and the world is more important than ever.”
– The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

“Our government believes that innovation and technology are key to creating the economy of the future. We are proud to support new, innovative technologies that will help Northern Ontario’s producers and organizations maximize operational efficiencies and improve product quality to become more competitive globally.”
– The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services  and Minister responsible for FedNor

“This investment in the agriculture sector will ensure continued growth, development and diversification of the local agri-food businesses and producers, creating more opportunities to market and increase sales of their  value-added products and services.”
– Viviane Lapointe, Member of Parliament for Sudbury

“Today’s announcement is an excellent example of how our government is helping to create jobs and strengthen the agriculture economy in our local communities. I am pleased that these priority innovation and technology projects will help maximize the economic potential of our region.”
– Marc G. Serré, Member of Parliament for Nickel Belt and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Official Languages 

“We are grateful to FedNor for seeing the value in conducting research to develop more innovative methods of enhancing productivity of regional farming enterprises. We look forward to working with our many partners in the agriculture industry to promote innovation and help increase the marketability of locally-grown products across Northern Ontario.”
– Yves Gauthier, President, Northern Ontario Farm Innovation Alliance (NOFIA)

Quick facts

  • Funding for NOFIA is provided through FedNor’s Regional Growth Through Innovation (REGI) program, which supports the growth of Northern Ontario businesses, their expansion into new markets, and their adoption of new technologies and processes.

  • Agri-food in Northern Ontario supports 8,117 jobs and contributes $541 million to the provincial GDP.

Associated links

Contacts

Alison Murphy, Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister responsible for FedNor
Alison.Murphy@sac-isc.gc.ca

Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario
Media Relations

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