Brought to you by:
Economic and Business Advisor
Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs
I can be reached at:
You can also contact the Agricultural Information Contact Centre at: 1-877-424-1300 for assistance.
Governments Driving Research and Innovation in Ontario
Ontario Agri-Food Research Initiative funding projects that boost production and increase trade opportunities for home grown products
The first application intakes – for three of the streams opens on November 2, 2023.
The Ontario Agri-Food Research Initiative (OAFRI) will provide a multi-year suite of funding opportunities to support research and innovation activities that advance the sector. These funding streams include applied research, pilot and demonstration, knowledge translation and transfer (KTT) and commercialization of products, including a new Grow Ontario Accelerator Hub. Funded projects will align with the agri-food sector’s research priorities to deliver new knowledge, products and practices.
The OAFRI research priority areas are: food safety, plant health, animal health and welfare, soil health, water quality and quantity, sustainable production systems, productive land capacity, competitive production systems, innovative products and product improvements, and trade, market and targeted sector growth
OMAFRA will deliver the applied research, pilot and demonstration and KTT funding streams. Bioenterprise Corporation will deliver the commercialization stream.
For More information:
Ontario Improving Access to Veterinary Care in Underserviced Areas
The Ontario government is launching the Veterinary Incentive Program to encourage newly licensed veterinarians to practice in northern and underserviced communities. The program intake opens today and will provide grants of up to $50,000 over five years to veterinarians who provide care to livestock and poultry in these communities.
Increasing veterinary capacity is part of the Grow Ontario Strategy, the province’s plan to strengthen the agriculture and food sector, support economic growth and ensure an efficient, reliable and responsive food supply for Ontarians.
Additional veterinary support for northern and rural communities includes the new Collaborative Doctor of Veterinary Medicine program, where students will spend two years at Lakehead University and two years at the University of Guelph in order to get hands-on experience working with livestock.
The Agricultural Adaptation Council (AAC) is administering the Veterinary Incentive Program. Program guidelines and application forms can be found on the AAC website.
Funding for Ontario Farmers Available Under the Resilient Agricultural Landscape Program (RALP) - Now Open
The intake will close once available funding has been fully allocated.
As part of the Ontario Agricultural Sustainability Initiative, OSCIA is delivering the Resilient Agricultural Landscape Program (RALP), a five-year program providing funding to eligible Ontario farmers to implement projects focused on addressing climate change through reducing greenhouse gas emissions and sequestering carbon.
Funding is available for:
- Natural Grassland Establishment,
- Perennial Biomass and Warm Season Pastures,
- Reduced Tillage,
- Tree & Shrub Planting,
- Water Retention Features, and,
Once the intake opens, applications to the Resilient Agricultural Landscape Program can be submitted electronically through the OSCIA Portal. If you have not already done so, you will need to create an account and complete the Enrolment Form on the OSCIA Portal to be ready to apply once the intake opens.
To apply, applicants will need the following:
- A valid premises identification (PID) number - for details, visit https://www.ontariopid.com/en-CA/
- A certificate of completion for a 4th Edition Environmental Farm Plan
- A tillage assessment or letter of support from a qualified third party
- A site map of the project location
SNAPP Intake 2 Opening Soon!
Intake 2 applications will be accepted from
November 6, 2023 to January 12, 2024
The SNAPP Program is an initiative of the Rural Agri-Innovation Network (RAIN), a division of the Sault Ste Marie Innovation Centre (SSMIC) in partnership with the Northern Ontario Farm Innovation Alliance (NOFIA) and the Northwestern Ontario Innovation Centre and supports northern Ontario agriculture and food producers, businesses, collaborations, communities and First Nations to create new products, enhance productivity, strengthen value chains, and increase efficiency or resource use, reducing ecological impact and carbon footprint while fostering growth.
Contact your regional representative to discuss project eligibility in order to receive an application.
Cathy Bouchard – firstname.lastname@example.org or (705) 942-7927 ext. 3135
Leia Weaver – email@example.com or (705) 647-4782
Northwest - Thunder Bay/Kenora/Rainy River:
Corey Jones – firstname.lastname@example.org or (807) 464-3665
For more information:
Beef Production Management
Free Webinar Series
Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs invites you to a four part webinar series that will be delivered over Zoom.
This series is free and once registered you will be included in all 4 event dates. They will take place from 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm Eastern
Date: Nov 7, 2023
Topic: How to take a forage sample (and what to do with the results)
Presenter: Christine O'Reilly
Date: Nov 14, 2023
Topic: Basic beef nutrition
Presenter: James Byrne
Date: Nov 21, 2023
Topic: Feeding weaned calves over the winter
Presenter: James Byrne
Date: Nov 28, 2023
Topic: Understanding the costs of production of the beef herd
Presenter: John Molenhuis
Supports farmers to build resilient ecological farms and grow a strong knowledge-sharing community.
EFAO brings farmers together so they can learn from each other and improve the health of their soils, crops, livestock and the environment, while running profitable farm businesses
November 1st - Webinar: Holistic Farm Design
November 1st - Webinar: Contract Seed Growing
November 1st - Webinar: Planning for Production
November 1st - Webinar: What are Co-ops and what does a farm co-op look like?
November 3rd - Webinar: Financing your Farm
November 9th - Course, Webinar: Holistic Management Course - 10 Sessions
November 27th - Virtual Meet-up: Farmer-led Research Symposium
November 29th/30th - 10th Annual Conference
Environmental Farm Plan (EFP)
The Environmental Farm Plan (EFP) is an assessment voluntarily prepared by farm families to increase their environmental awareness in up to 23 different areas on their farm. Through the EFP process, farmers highlight their farm’s environmental strengths, identify areas of environmental concern, and set realistic action plans with timetables to improve environmental conditions.
An (EFP) is sometimes required to be eligible for funding programs.
Upcoming Event: 4th edition EFP (Environmental Farm Plan) workshop helps Producers to learn more about on-farm environmental best management practices, develop action plans and learn about cost-share funding opportunities. All workshop materials are provided. Bottled water will be available Your Workshop Leader will send further details one week prior to the workshop.
Thunder Bay Ontario:
Workshop Leader: Rudy Buitenhuis
Day 1:Thursday November 30, and Day 2:Thursday December 7, 2023
To find a Workshop in your area, for information or to Register:
RAIN is a collaborator!
In a remarkable recognition of innovation and collaborative prowess, the Weston Foundation's Homegrown Innovation Challenge has provided a game-changing grant of $1,000,000 to 11 teams who are "future-proofing food production in Canada".
At the forefront of this groundbreaking endeavor is the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre's RAIN (Rural Agri-Innovation Network) division, and partners Collège Boréal, AgriTech North, and Truly Northern.
"RAIN is thrilled to join forces with our esteemed partners in pioneering an innovative, sustainable system for year round berry production in Canada," says David Thompson, Director of RAIN. " Our role centers on accelerating the development and commercialization of the these groundbreaking technologies, setting a new benchmark for environmentally responsible and economically viable agriculture."
Starting a Food Business
This session is for you if you are in the early stages of development and are looking to gain knowledge in the food and beverage industry.
In this free 60-minute online seminar learn about:
- Creating a Business Model
- Doing your Market Research
- Analyzing the Competition
- What is Your Value Proposition?
Do you have an idea for a food business? Want to learn more before you “venture” into food production? Looking to find out how to search for a licensed commercial kitchen that can help you get your venture off the ground? Or just have a delicious recipe you wish to cook up into a money-making business? Then be sure to attend this valuable workshop on “Starting a Food Business”.
OMAFRA Dateline is an online calendar resource for use by interested individuals, businesses and organizations across Ontario. Calendar events may be hosted by OMAFRA or other groups. The events posted on this site are aimed at sharing information to agriculture, agri-food businesses and regional economic development clients. Please check the calendar regularly for upcoming events, workshops, conferences and meetings or to post an event.
Farmer Wellness Initiative
If you're in need of support, please reach out and call us anytime - from the tractor, from the barn, or from the house after the sun sets on another long day.
The Farmer Wellness Initiative provides access to free counselling services and tailored mental health support and resources to all Ontario farmers and their families.
CALL NOW: 1-866-267-6255
Governments Investing in Ontario’s Maple Syrup Sector
Intake Opens November 9th, 2023
The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing up to $1 million over two years through the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Sustainable CAP) to support productivity and growth in the province’s maple syrup sector.
To be eligible, applicants must have a minimum of 1,000 taps in operation, as of April 1, 2023 and meet other criteria.
Under the Maple Production Improvement Initiative, applicants can receive up to 50 per cent cost-share funding for eligible costs, to a maximum of $20,000 per project.
The Maple Production Improvement Initiative will be delivered by the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA). More details about the initiative and its application process will soon be available online via the OSCIA.
Maple Production Improvement Initiative - Ontario Soil Crop
Grow Ontario Market Initiative - OPEN
OMAFRA is pleased to inform you that the governments of Canada and Ontario are investing up to $6 million under the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Sustainable CAP) to help eligible agri-food businesses and industry organizations expand markets for Ontario food products.
This Grow Ontario Market Initiative will support agri-food producers, processors, and industry organizations with cost-share opportunities for the implementation of domestic and export marketing activities.
Eligible activities will include (see link to guidelines for specific program details):
· analysis and planning for new export and domestic market opportunities
· implementation of new export and domestic marketing activities
· development of new products that meet market opportunities
Under the Grow Ontario Market Initiative applicants can receive up to 50 per cent cost share for eligible costs, to a maximum of $60,000 for producers and processors, and up to $125,000 for industry organizations.
Learn how to apply for funding to grow your agri-food business through marketing analysis and planning, new product development and marketing activities at this link Grow Ontario Market Initiative Guidelines | ontario.ca
For More Information or with questions about the program please contact your regional advisor directly
Biosecurity Enhancement Initiative Guidelines - OPEN
Learn more about funding opportunities to enhance biosecurity at your business.
Intake Open Now
The Biosecurity Enhancement Initiative supports the resiliency of the agriculture and food sector by addressing biosecurity risks and enhancing emergency preparedness. It provides funding opportunities to key agriculture industry businesses, including Primary Producers, Processors, and Service Providers. The Initiative has 7 Project Categories to support related activities across the full agri-food value chain (two for animal health and five for plant health).
Honey Bee Health Initiative
Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership
Intake Open Now
To help support beekeepers in maintaining healthy honey bee colonies as well as grow their number of colonies to increase the sustainability of the beekeeping industry in Ontario.
Increasing Deadstock Capacity Initiative
Intake Open now until February 1, 2024.
This initiative will help address capacity gaps in the removal, handling, and disposal of deadstock in the agricultural sector.
It will provide opportunities for eligible businesses to streamline operations and improve accessibility by increasing capacities and service options.
Deadstock service providers and other organizations may be eligible for cost-shared funding of up to $100,000 per project/$300,000 per applicant to help manage deadstock disposal in Ontario.
All approved projects must be completed by February 1, 2025.
For More Information or to Apply:
New Funding Program for Regional Activities
The Beef Cattle Research Council is pleased to launch a pilot initiative to support regional extension activities.
Applicants may apply to receive up to a maximum of $5,000 in funding per activity.
Matching funding is encouraged, but not a requirement. Funding will be awarded for all proposals that meet the evaluation criteria until all funds have been committed.
Activities must be completed by no later than August 2024.
Eligible activities must involve beef producers and be aligned with the Canadian Beef Research and Technology Transfer Strategy. Activities may include:
- extension meetings,
- field days,
- training events or
- new engagement ideas.
Applications must be submitted using the online application form. Successful applicants will be notified via email. Program closure will be updated on the call for proposals page.
Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation
INVEST North Program
The Invest North Program is designed to boost economic growth in Northern Ontario by encouraging businesses to invest in transformative, strategic and complementary business development opportunities in Northern communities. The program will support productivity, innovation, business competitiveness, revenue growth, export capacity development, job creation and retention.
Community Enhancement Program
The Community Enhancement Program is designed to help build strong and resilient Northern communities through infrastructure investments, to upgrade / repair existing assets to improve community quality of life, economic development infrastructure and strategic economic development initiatives
For a list of all NOHFC programming go to: https://nohfc.ca/en/nohfc_programs
Federal Economic Development Agency for Northern Ontario
FedNor is the Government of Canada's economic development organization for Northern Ontario. Through its programs and services, and through its financial support of projects that lead to job creation and economic growth, FedNor works with businesses and community partners to build a stronger Northern Ontario.
Current Open Programs Include:
Regional Economic Growth through Innovation (REGI)
Supporting the growth of Canadian businesses, their expansion into new markets and their adoption of new technologies and processes.
Northern Ontario Development Program (NODP)
Supporting communities' efforts to plan and mobilize their resources, enhance business growth, and exploit new opportunities for economic development and diversification.
Community Futures Program (CFP)
Encouraging the growth of small and medium-sized businesses via a network of 24 Community Futures Development Corporations spread out across the region.
Economic Development Initiative (EDI)
Enhancing the economic viability of the region’s Francophone communities through support for innovation, economic diversification and business growth initiatives.
For More Information or to Apply:
Other E-mail Notices, Updates, Blogs and Podcasts that OMAFRA offers
Farm Business Registration
To register a farm business and get a Farm Business Registration number (FBR), please contact Agricorp at 1-866-327-367 email@example.com | www.agricorp.com
Indian Agricultural Program of Ontario (IAPO)
Provides financing and support to build sustainable communities for Indigenous farmers and businesses.
Indigenous Services Canada
Canadian Agricultural Loans Act program
Loan program to farmers and agricultural co-operatives. Farmers can use these loans to establish, improve, and develop farms, while agricultural co-operatives may also access loans to process, distribute, or market the products of farming.
An online application that allows you to create custom maps and find agricultural information for Ontario, combining agricultural data on soils and drainage, as well as data layers from other Government of Ontario ministries.
The website for all things agriculture in the north, hosted by Northern Ontario Farm Innovation Alliance.
Farm Credit Canada
A federal Crown corporation that lends money and provides other services to primary producers, agri-food operations and agribusinesses that provide inputs or add value to agriculture.