To fulfill the requirements of Canadians worldwide, robust food supply chains are required. In light of this, improving the supply chain and fostering economic growth both depend heavily on the agri-food industry. Across Canada, investments in the agri-food sector aid in building thriving, sustainable communities.
Support from FedNor will aide in crucial sector development while strengthening Canadians’ food supply networks.
Terry Sheehan, MP for Sault Ste. Marie and Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Labour, announced today that FedNor will invest $951,530 in two initiatives to support the expansion and diversification of Northern Ontario’s agri-food industry. The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Indigenous Services and Minister in charge of FedNor, made the announcement on her behalf.
“The FedNor funds announced today will help good, locally produced food remain available while also supporting growth and diversification in the critical agri-food sector supply chain. We are proud to support our local farmers and producers with these projects that will help foster partnerships and create new growth and new opportunities for Northern Ontario.”
– Terry Sheehan, Member of Parliament for Sault Ste Marie and
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Labour
A non-repayable contribution of $721,530 will be made to the Rural Agri-Innovation Network (RAIN), a unit of the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre (SSMIC), in order to develop and implement the Responsive Advancement for Meat Processing (RAMP) programme, which would offer productivity evaluations and management training to abattoirs and meat plants throughout Northern Ontario.
“This investment represents an important step toward building a resilient farm and food sector in Northern Ontario. FedNor is helping support farmers and communities to enhance the agri-food sector in Algoma region through these funds, and in doing so is helping our region meet its economic potential.”
– David Thompson, manager of the Rural Agri-Innovation Network (RAIN)
The project’s objective is to broaden and diversify the region’s vital meat supply chain in order to meet the region’s growing demand from farmers and consumers for locally sourced meat products. RAIN anticipates that this investment will directly result in the creation of 10 full-time jobs and the maintenance of 35 more.
The announcement also includes a $230,000 grant for Penokean Hills Cooperative (PHC) to expand its infrastructure in order to increase feed yard capacity and operational effectiveness. PHC will be able to raise the growth and daily gains of the cattle as well as the overall quantity of finished cattle in the value chain thanks to the changes made possible by this project.
“We are happy that FedNor is supporting this infrastructure expansion, which will allow us to not only continue to create high-end, consistent products for market, but to increase our production. These improvements will benefit the farming community, our customers, and support many more restaurants, butcher shops, and other businesses across Ontario.”
– Chris Gordon, Owner and General Manager at Penokean Hills Farms
The financing announced today is offered through FedNor programs, which offer financial support for initiatives that result in job creation and economic growth. FedNor also works with businesses and community partners through these programs to strengthen Northern Ontario.
- Penokean Hills Cooperative’s portion of the funding is provided by FedNor’s Northern Ontario Development Program, which supports projects led by municipalities, First Nations, and other organizations and institutions that promote sustainable community economic development, diversification, job creation, and self-reliant communities.
- The Rural Agri-Innovation Network (RAIN)’s funding is provided by FedNor’s Regional Growth Through Innovation Fund, which supports the growth of Northern Ontario businesses, their expansion into new markets, and their adoption of new technologies and processes.
It is projected that this initiative will increase local agricultural and stock producers’ incomes while also producing one permanent employment and two temporary placements.