Ontario Government Provides Additional Support for Farmers across Niagara and rest of Province

Government Delivers Early on Expanded Risk Management Program for Agro Sector

“This funding supports farmers with unforeseen challenges such as fluctuating market prices, extreme weather events like flooding or drought, and disease.”

News from Ontario’s Ford Government

Posted August 11th, 2020 on Niagara At Large

Wellandport in Niagara, Ontario  – This August 10th , Sam Oosterhoff MPP for Niagara West, welcomed the government’s action to expand the Risk Management Program a year earlier than planned by $50 million for a total of $150 million annually.

Niagara West MPP and Ontario Ford government rep Sam Oosterhoff announcing aid for farmers in the Niagara community of Wellandport this August 10th. Photo courtesy of the MPP’s constituency office

This funding supports farmers with unforeseen challenges such as fluctuating market prices, extreme weather events like flooding or drought, and disease.

The announcement was made on July 16 by Premier Doug Ford, and Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

Approximately 80 percent of eligible commercial production in the cattle, hog, sheep, veal, grains and oilseeds, and edible horticulture sectors in Ontario is covered by the provincial Risk Management Program.

“Farmers take on significant risks every growing season as they plant and harvest with the hope of a reasonable yield from their long hours and dedicated investment in the land,” said MPP Oosterhoff.

“In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, our government, under the strong leadership of Doug Ford, Premier of Ontario, and Minister Hardeman, is ensuring local producers and growers in Niagara are not alone as they face the challenges of fluctuating market prices and weather damage to crops.”

“We know farmers face tremendous pressures and uncertainties including reduced processing capacity, increased costs and volatile markets.  After listening to feedback from the farming sector, we are accelerating our promise to increase the Risk Management Program to $150 million by one year,” said Minister Hardeman.

“We’re committed to providing our farmers with added support at this time and advocating on their behalf with the federal government to help them continue doing their critical work of producing safe, nutritious food for our kitchen tables.”

The increased investment in the Risk Management Program is in addition to a $15 million Enhanced Agri-food Workplace Protection Program. Farmers and other operations have access to cost-share funding to help enhance health and safety measures for employees, such as purchasing personal protective equipment, medical testing equipment, enhanced cleaning and disinfection, and temporary or permanent modifications to enhance physical distancing.

Support is also available for farmers who experience unexpected costs for housing and transportation as a result of a COVID-19 outbreak on their farm.

Quick Facts

  •   *   Producers should contact the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs’ delivery agent, Agricorp, to enroll in the Risk Management Program and AgriStability or to discuss their individual files
  • *   In response to COVID-19, the federal and Ontario governments have added labour as an insured risk to Production Insurance for the 2020 growing season.
  • *   Canada and Ontario have also announced up to $10 million of support for beef and pork sectors through AgriRecovery
  • *   Ontario has an estimated 49,600 farms that contribute an estimated $7.6 billion annually to the province’s economy.

Background Information

  *   Farmers Support Expanded Risk Management Program<https://news.ontario.ca/opo/en/2020/07/farmers-support-expanded-risk-management-program.html>

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“A Politician Thinks Of The Next Election. A Leader Thinks Of The Next Generation.” – Bernie Sanders

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