Statement from Jeff Leal, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs
“Earlier this year, Ontario signed onto the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP), a new five-year national framework that will help guide the future of Canada’s agri-food sector and bring nearly $1.5 billion dollars in funding to Ontario’s agri-food sector over the next five years.
Our government is committed to ensuring that the CAP builds on the successes achieved through Growing Forward 2 (GF2) and that the transition to new programming in April is seamless.
Today (Dec. 4), I had the opportunity to launch preliminary discussions with leaders from across our agri-food sector on the design and development of the $417 million federal-provincial investment in strategic programming.
Research and innovation will continue to be a key focus across all program areas. To best support Ontario’s farmers and processors, our programs will focus on three key priorities, economic development, environmental stewardship, and protection and assurance systems.
CAP programming will maximize investment by working with partners on high-impact projects that best achieve government objectives, yield the greatest value and reduce barriers for program delivery.
Although federal funding for CAP will remain the same as under GF2, Ontario is determined to maximize outcomes, while having the flexibility to design programming that works for Ontario.
To ensure programs are delivered in alignment with our key priorities, we will be working in partnership with industry to evolve our program delivery. While we are in the process of undertaking this review, for merit-based programming for producers, processors and organizations, it is our intent that the delivery agents will remain the same.
I look forward to finalizing our bi-lateral agreement with the federal government. I will continue to work hard to represent the interests of the over 800,000 hard-working Ontarians who wake up each and every day to work in our province’s agri-food sector.”