The Ontario Government commits over $20 million to agri-farming technology.
By Dami Igbinyemi
Ernie Hardeman, Ontario’s Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs announced the Agri-tech Innovation Program back in April 2021. This was a $22 million cost-share program that will help farming operators and processor businesses invest in innovative technology by providing up to 60% of funding for eligible costs. This program was part of a $25.5 million program launched by the Ontario government to increase the investment of innovative technology within the agri-food sector.
“Investing in new technology will have tremendous potential to help our agri-food industry meet many of the current challenges it faces,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “I’m calling on agri-food businesses, commodity organizations and technology providers to join this exciting new initiative and help protect the safety of agri-food workers while ensuring Ontario’s agri-food sector continues to lead across North American and around the world.”
The Innovator Stream is the second phase of the Agri-tech Innovation Program, providing funding for targeted projects. The Innovator Stream focuses on ground-breaking projects new to Ontario and the Agri-sector. Projects will require collaboration between two or more agri-food businesses, organizations, or developers. The Innovator Stream intake will run from August 19 to September 27, 2021. Eligibility includes targeted, high-impact projects that pilot or demonstrate cutting-edge technology. More information can be found on this website.
“To be a highly competitive food and beverage processing industry globally, we must be forward-thinking on innovation,” said Chris Conway, CEO, Food and Beverage Ontario. “This program will make it possible for leaders in technology and business to work together on priority issues such as labour productivity and develop new solutions that will benefit the entire industry.”
Projects will help demonstrate the benefits of technology in the Agri-sector and help support future investments. Possible project areas include innovation for crop production, livestock production, or food preparation, processing, and production. They will focus on technology that isn’t available yet but have potential and are ready to be demonstrated in a working environment.
More great reading