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Rainy River ag industry nets $1.3M for tile drainage

Provincial government investment will help expand area farming

The provincial government is providing $1.3 million toward two tile drainage projects in the Rainy River District.

Tile drainage is an underground drainage system that helps regulate the amount of water crops receive, removing excess moisture and helping to aerate the soil. Though it’s beneficial for optimal farming conditions, it can be expensive for the producer.

Through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corp., the $1.3 million will be parcelled out for two projects:

  • $1 million will go to the Rainy River Future Development Corporation to administer a two-year tile drainage program. The program would support the installation of tile drainage on approximately 1,900 acres of land and benefit a consortium of 10 farmers in the district. The project will create two part-time jobs.
  • $374,833 will go to Tait Bros Contracting Ltd. to purchase equipment in order to expand its tile drainage installation business into northwestern Ontario and establish an office in Rainy River. The project will create three full-time jobs.

“Our government is proud to invest in tile drainage projects that lead to larger, healthier crops, local food sources and good jobs for the people of northwestern Ontario,” Northern Development Minister Greg Rickford said in a Sept. 16 news release.

“We recognize the importance and significance of our farmers and crop growers to northwestern Ontario’s economic prosperity, resilience and diversification.”

The NOHFC said it’s invested more than $12 million in 19 til drainage projects since June 2018, leveraging an additional $15 million in economic activity, resulting in agricultural improvements to more than 24,000 acres.