This week’s guest commentary comes from Larry Davis, Board Member, Ontario Federation of Agriculture
We wait all winter for spring and this season is arguably one of the busiest, especially for farmers. Ontario’s approximately 51,000 farmers grow, raise and produce some of the safest, freshest and most economical food in the world. And while agriculture happens all year long, spring starts the season for many of the more than 200 products grown in Ontario. Ontario farmers are busy seeding and planting vegetable and field crops this season, making some of the biggest investments in their businesses right now.
Farming is big business in Ontario. Agriculture contributes more than $13.7 billion to the provincial economy and provides jobs for 158,000 Ontarians. As farmers, we know that every dollar invested in our farms pays dividends to our communities, economy and the future of our industry.
Agriculture has a huge ripple effect. Every decision made on the farm affects the sustainability of our communities. That includes businesses along the value chain like food processers and retailers. It’s no surprise the Ontario farm sector is also a driving force behind the province’s rural economy, accounting for 12.3% of rural Ontario GDP.
We know our members are busy out in the fields, working in the barns, orchards and vineyards this time of year. So the Ontario Federation of Agriculture sends a big thank you to our members who are working long hours this spring, investing in their farm businesses and all of Ontario.