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Agri-food programs net $2.2M in government funding

Funds will support business growth, agri-food innovation
(Stock image)

The federal government is providing $2.2 million in funds to support agri-food initiatives in Northern Ontario.

In a Jan. 20 news release, FedNor announced the funds would go to the Sault Ste. Marie Innovation Centre for two projects.

Of the total, $1,625,404 will go toward the Sustainable New Agri-food Products and Productivity (SNAPP) program for an additional three years.

SNAPP provides agri-food producers with funding to produce new products, enhance productivity, or introduce new technology, to help grow their businesses.

This iteration of SNAPP will increase access to capital, help address challenges such as a shorter growing season and distance to market, and promote value-added processing and innovative production practices.

The remaining $592,097 will help the innovation centre enhance the Algoma District’s agri-food innovation ecosystem.

This initiative will include promoting technology adoption, scaling up the regional maple syrup cluster for processing and export, and supporting farm and food processing business attraction and expansion over a three-year period.

“We would like to thank the Government of Canada for its continued support of our efforts to help businesses scale up and grow,” said David Thompson, project coordinator at the Rural Agri-Innovation Network (RAIN), in the release.

“We take pride in helping the agri-food sector of Algoma District and Northern Ontario develop a culture of innovation, and in turn, create job opportunities for area residents.” 

The funding is being provided by FedNor’s Regional Economic Growth through Innovation (REGI) program, which supports the growth of Canadian businesses, their expansion into new markets, and their adoption of new technologies and processes.