Press Release: Government Funding Boosts Efficiency for Ontario Meat Processors

Government Funding Boosts Efficiency for Ontario Meat Processors

Toronto, Ontario – February 7, 2024 – Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, in collaboration with the Ontario government, has announced a substantial investment of over $13 million to support upgrades in the meat processing sector. This funding, part of the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Sustainable CAP), aims to assist standalone meat processors and abattoirs in Ontario in enhancing their productivity and efficiency while upholding stringent food safety standards.

The funding will be distributed across 151 projects focused on upgrading meat handling and processing equipment, technologies, and practices to improve production capacity and competitiveness. Examples of investments include providing funds to Penokean Hills Farms in Bruce Mines for the acquisition and installation of equipment to increase production, Sikorski Sausages in London to expand capacity and labor efficiency, and Townsend Butchers in Simcoe to meet market demand.

In addition to equipment upgrades, the initiative will cover training and engineering costs associated with project completion. Applications for funding opened on August 31, 2023, and closed on September 25, 2023. All projects are expected to be completed with equipment delivered by March 1, 2024.

This funding builds upon previous investments in the Meat Processors Capacity Improvement Initiative, which has seen over $14 million allocated since 2020 through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP).

The Sustainable CAP, spanning from 2023 to 2028, is a $3.5-billion investment by federal, provincial, and territorial governments aimed at strengthening competitiveness, innovation, and resiliency in the agriculture, agri‐food, and agri‐based products sectors.

Quotes: “The demand for high-quality Canadian products continues to grow. This funding through Sustainable CAP will empower Ontario’s meat processing industry with the necessary resources to meet this demand efficiently,” said The Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

“The Meat Processors Capacity Improvement Initiative demonstrates our commitment to strategically investing in key sectors. By supporting meat processors in enhancing their capabilities, we’re ensuring Ontario remains competitive on a global scale,” stated The Honourable Lisa Thompson, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs.

Quick Facts:

  • Ontario is home to approximately 480 provincially licensed and 239 federally licensed abattoirs and standalone meat plants.
  • Sustainable CAP aligns with Ontario’s Grow Ontario Strategy, which aims to increase food production by 30% over 10 years and grow agriculture and food exports by 8% annually.
  • Sustainability and innovation are key priorities of Sustainable CAP, as outlined by federal-provincial-territorial agricultural ministers in The Guelph Statement.

For more information about this funding initiative and updates on agricultural programs, please visit Canada’s official website: www.canada.ca/agriculture

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