Colborne – To cap off Ontario Agriculture Week celebrations, Lou Rinaldi, MPP for Northumberland—Quinte West announced that the Ontario government is providing the Ontario Agri-Food Venture Centre (OAFVC) with $32,400 in funding through the Local Food Investment Fund.
The support will allow the OAFVC to purchase a new automated liquid filling and bottling machine that will help increase productivity and allow local food entrepreneurs to meet the growing demand for natural fruit drinks, edible oils and other bottled product markets.
The OAFVC is one of nineteen local food projects across the province that will receive nearly $500,000 in new investments made possible through the province’s Local Food Investment Fund, administered by the Greenbelt Fund.
“I’m proud to represent a strong community of innovators and entrepreneurs in my riding of Northumberland-Quinte West. Our government is pleased to be supporting the Ontario Agri-Food Venture Centre in their efforts to build a strong regional food economy and get more local food on Ontarians’ plates” said Lou Rinaldi, MPP for Northumberland—Quinte West.
“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. This investment will help increase access to local food in Northumberland County and help create good jobs across the province”” said Jeff Leal, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
"The OAFVC is an important facility that allows local food leaders to test out their ideas and find new and creative ways to take advantage of the terrific local food offerings in Northumberland County,” said Burkhard Mausberg, CEO of the Greenbelt Fund. “The Greenbelt Fund is proud to support projects like this one that are getting more local food options, onto Ontarians’ plates.”
“Northumberland County is proud to be investing in new equipment for the Ontario Agri-food Venture Centre that will allow more entrepreneurs and local food innovators to develop and sell their local food products in the County and across Ontario. We appreciate the support for our project from the Greenbelt Fund and Government of Ontario,” said Mark Walas, Northumberland County Warden.
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 $7 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 agri-food value chain, broader public sector institutions, and not-for-profits working to increase the amount of Ontario-grown and produced 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 through innovative investments that 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:
Phone: (416) 960-0001 ext. 306
Mobile: (647) 834-5657
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