VERN, ONTARIO - September 18, 2019 (LSN) – Ontario's government is supporting Northern Ontario's agri-food sector by helping farmers improve their land, diversify crops, expand their businesses and create more jobs.
Today, Greg Rickford, Minister of Energy, Northern Development and Mines, was joined by Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, at the International Plowing Match and Rural Expo to announce the province is investing in 20 agriculture projects across the north. Included in the 20-project list is $200,000 for BisON to build a new bison ranch in Crystal Falls to meet increasing demand for bison meat in Ontario.
Other investments in the West Nipissing region include:
"The agricultural industry is a key economic driver and significant job creator in many northern communities," said Minister Rickford. "These investments in the north's agri-food sector help farmers and food producers improve their farmland, expand their operations and increase revenues - sending a signal to the world that Northern Ontario is open for business."
"These efforts will help strengthen our province's agri-food sector in the north and support employment in a variety of rural areas," said Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. "Our government is committed to supporting the growth and prosperity of the agri-food sector in Northern Ontario and across the province."
In addition to helping individual farming businesses thrive, more than $4.3 million in funding is going toward five tile drainage projects across northeastern Ontario. Tile drainage removes excess water from soil below its surface, particularly in the spring, using perforated, plastic tubing buried in the fields. Removing excess water allows farmers to work the fields sooner and helps crops develop deeper root systems that support better growth.
Tile drainage projects create more opportunities for economic growth in Northern Ontario by increasing the amount of land available for farming and increasing the value of existing farm land. In recent years, Ontario has invested more than $37 million in 41 tile drainage projects, representing 64,569 acres of Northern Ontario farmland.
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