Ontario Government Helping Get More Local Food on Ontarians' Plates

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

September 29, 2017

ONTARIO GOVERNMENT HELPING GET MORE LOCAL FOOD ON ONTARIANS’ PLATES
New funding supports Local Food Investment Fund projects across Ontario

Peterborough – Kicking-off Agriculture Week celebrations, Jeff Leal, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs announced that the Government of Ontario is supporting 19 local food projects across the province that will increase access to local food and support the growth of Ontario’s agri-food sector.

The announcement was made at John Millar Farm in Keene, one of the recipients of the over $500,000 in new investments made possible with funding by the Government of Ontario through the province’s Local Food Investment Fund, administered by the Greenbelt Fund.

As the only licensed egg-grading facility in Peterborough County, John Millar Farm will be expanding its egg storage facility in order to improve capacity. This project is expected to help the farm generate $36,000 in local food sales.

“Through the Local Food Investment Fund, our government is supporting Ontario’s booming agri-food sector, to make it even easier for Ontarians to enjoy the good things grown, harvested and made in Ontario. It’s great to be here in my riding of Peterborough to make this special announcement, which will increase access to local food, strengthen our rural and urban economies and create good jobs across the province,” said Jeff Leal, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

“The diversity of projects the Greenbelt Fund is investing in speaks to the strength of the local food movement and the economic opportunity in local food,” said Kathy Macpherson, VP of the Greenbelt Fund. “From bringing more Ontario ground turkey to Ontarian’s plates to improving access to local food in the far north to increasing access to local eggs, our investments are supporting good jobs and a more sustainable food system across Ontario.”

“John Millar Farm is proud to be supplying fresh, locally-raised eggs to the community in Peterborough County and this investment from the Greenbelt Fund and Government of Ontario is going to let us expand to serve even more customers,” said Bonnie Clark, co-owner of John Millar Farm.

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About the Local Food Investment Fund:
The Local Food Investment Fund supports farmers, agri-food business and non-profits to get more local food on Ontario plates. In 2015, the Ontario government provided the Greenbelt Fund with $6 million over three years to support initiatives that will help support the province’s local food strategy by enhancing consumer awareness and access to local food, as well as generating demand and supply of Ontario foods and beverages. The investment supports initiatives such as the Local Food Investment Fund, which is a grant program for farmers and other businesses along the food value chain, broader public sector institutions, and not-for-profits working to increase the amount of Ontario-grown and made food purchased and enjoyed across the province. The Local Food Investment Fund's three grant streams focus on enhancing local food literacy, increasing market access for small and mid-size Ontario farmers and processors and increasing purchases of local food in the broader public sector, such as hospitals and universities.

About the Greenbelt Fund:
The Greenbelt Fund changes the way we eat food in Ontario. The fund’s innovative investments get more local food onto the plates of Ontarians. We work with businesses, institutions and NGOs to make Ontario’s farmers the first choice for consumers. The fund’s work has generated a 13-fold return on our investments, permanently changed the food value chain and improved local food awareness and education around the province. As a not-for-profit, the Greenbelt Fund is supported by public and private sources.

Contact for Greenbelt Fund:
Erica Woods
Communications Manager
Greenbelt Fund
Phone: (416) 960-0001 ext. 306
Mobile: (647) 834-5657
ewoods@greenbeltfund.ca