This $1.8 million investment will support research projects to develop new environmental technologies, practices, and on-farm solutions, and foster efficiency and competitiveness in the agri-food sector.
“Farmers sustain crops and manage soil health – they are dedicated stewards of the lands they work,” said Ernie Hardeman, Ontario’s Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “We want to continue providing farmers with the latest knowledge and tools, so they keep protecting our soil, water and air for generations to come.”
The government has provided this investment through the Ontario Agri-Food Innovation Alliance, a collaboration with the University of Guelph, to help Ontario’s agri-food and rural sectors innovate and grow. Some of this research is aimed at helping farmers:
- Attract wild bees to help pollinate their fruit and vegetable crops
- Use the right tools to track soil health on their land
- Know what to grow off-season in corn fields to enhance productivity
- Overcome barriers that prevent some farmers from adopting best soil health practices
- The $1.8 million earmarked for soil and water protection projects is part of the province’s $5.8 million annual investment in the Ontario Agri-Food Innovation Alliance, which supports research at the University of Guelph. The Alliance funds research in areas of environmental sustainability, animal and plant health and production, as well as agri-food and bio-product development.
- Ontario’s Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan and Ontario’s Agricultural Soil Health and Conservation Strategy outline commitments to support actions like on-farm soil and water quality best management practices that help the agriculture sector address environmental concerns and be more resilient to current and future climate impacts.
- Ontario’s agriculture and agri-food sector is a key driver of the provincial economy, contributing $39.5 billion to the GDP and supporting more than 822,000 jobs.