Premier Kathleen Wynne is in China on a one-week trade mission and is keen to sell more agri-food items. Officials met with senior executives at Alibaba, aiming to convince the Chinese online shopping giant to carry Ontario made products.
In this Toronto Star article the interest by the company sounds very positive: http://www.thestar.com/business/2014/10/29/wynne_woos_alibaba_in_ch...
Is there anything Ontario farmers or the ag industry can do to help?
What else can Kathleen Wynne do to help the agri-food industry in Ontario?
The government is investing $713,000 to Martin’s Family Fruit Farm to adapt their processing equipment for the slicing and dehydration of fresh vegetables into chips.
“This type of innovation is key to creating jobs and increasing profitability for farmers,” said MP Harold Albrecht, who made the announcement on behalf of Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz.
The company already makes apple chips at their processing facility in Elmira. They will work to develop a dehydration method for potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots and tomatoes. Martin’s will also design and install processing equipment for large-scale production.
“This project will help create jobs and increase demand for vegetables leading to increased opportunities and greater profitability for farmers,” Albrecht said.
The money comes from the AgriInnovation program. Albrecht said the goal of the program is for Canadian producers to benefit from cutting edge science and technology while boosting the economy.
“When we think about innovation in Waterloo Region, we think about computers and digital media, but Martin’s Family Fruit Farm are a shining example of the innovation occurring at the farm gate,” Albrecht said.
“It’s exciting to see the growth from where we came from, from the first hundred apple trees that my father planted in ’71 to where we are now,” said Kevin Martin, the President of Martin’s Family Fruit Farm.