Farmers, processors and organizations are encouraged to attend one of nine upcoming information sessions to learn about new programs and cost-share opportunities being rolled out under Growing Forward 2. The sessions will include program details, as well as information on upcoming application deadlines and what may be required to apply for cost-share funding.

“These sessions are designed so producers can learn about opportunities they may be able to take advantage of through Growing Forward 2,” says Henry Denotter, President of the Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association (OSCIA), which will play the lead role in delivering programs to farmers. “There will be changes from what has been in place in the past and although some details are still being worked out, workshop and cost-share funding opportunities will be available for farmers in a variety of areas.”

To meet the immediate needs of the Growing Forward 2 program, as well as the programs OSCIA delivers for partners like the Ministry of Natural Resources, the Greenbelt Foundation, Environment Canada and others, five new regional program leads have been hired.

Margaret May, Lois Sinclair, Paul Reeds, Arlene Ross and Claude Péloquin are strategically located across the province and will deliver workshops as well as assist with development activities. OSCIA expects to hire additional regional workshop leaders, as well as staff to support regional program delivery, once the details of cost-share opportunities become available.

“This is part of OSCIA’s efforts to update our field delivery network to best serve the programs of the future,” says OSCIA Executive Director, Harold Rudy. “One of OSCIA’s strategic directions is program delivery and we must continuously improve so that we are delivering the best value both to producers and to our funding partners.”

There are nine in-person sessions with options to join via WebEx for three of these sessions.

These will take place as follows:

  • May 30, Ambassador Hotel, Sudbury, starting at 1:30 pm
  • May 31, Holiday Inn Hotel and Conference Centre, Barrie, starting at 9:30 am with option to join via WebEx
  • June 3, Four Points Sheraton, London, starting at 1:30 pm
  • June 3, Four Points Sheraton, London, starting at 7:00 pm
  • June 4, Holiday Inn, Guelph, starting at 1:30 pm with option to join via WebEx
  • June 4, Holiday Inn, Guelph, starting at 7:00 pm
  • June 5, Kemptville College, starting at 1:30 pm
  • June 6, Ramada Inn, Trenton, starting at 9:30 am
  • June 7, French only, Alfred College, Alfred, starting at 9:30 am with option to join via WebEx

Pre-registration for the information meetings is available at http://registration.wildapricot.org or through a link on the OSCIA website, www.ontariosoilcrop.org.

Dates for upcoming Canada-Ontario Environmental Farm Plan and Growing Your Farm Profits workshops will be available in May. Funding support is planned to be available for education, training, planning and skills development by summer. Farm businesses will be able to find out more about funding assistance for projects by the fall season; these will be assessed according to merit criteria.

Growing Forward 2 (GF2) is a federal-provincial-territorial initiative aimed at encouraging innovation, competitiveness and market development in Canada’s agri-food and agri-products sector. In Ontario, farm, food and other agri-businesses can choose different ways to help grow their profits, expand their markets and manage risks.

The Ontario Soil and Crop Improvement Association is a not-for-profit farm organization dedicated to working with farmers to facilitate responsible economic management of soil, water, air and crops through development and communication of innovative farming practices.

For more information:

Contact oscia@ontariosoilcrop.org or 1-800-265-9751

 

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