The Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) knows the province can do much more for its citizen by simply distributing economic development opportunities across the province. It’s how we can move towards Producing Prosperity in Ontario with our agri-food sector.
From farmers to our diverse food processing industry, our agri-food sector is the leading economic engine for the Ontario economy – a powerhouse of possibility. To keep this sector profitable and productive, we need strong and vibrant communities with the infrastructure to support growth.
- Barton Report
Rural Ontario needs investments to grow existing businesses, attract new companies and boost opportunities for regional economic development.
Rural Ontario needs affordable energy. Natural gas is the single most important investment that will give farms, businesses and rural residents the competitive edge to drive growth. If natural gas was available across the province, Ontario farmers, local businesses and rural residents could save more than $1 billion in annual energy costs.
Rural Ontario needs roads, bridges and proper drainage systems to support the growth and transportation of our goods and services.
Reliable internet supports farms and rural communities. Without it, our businesses, residents and schools are at a disadvantage to the rest of the province.
Rural schools are essential to attract and retain local employees by providing quality education and local community hubs for the next generation of Ontarians.
When we distribute economic development across Ontario, our agri-food sector can produce greater prosperity for the entire province. Spreading investment will meet the needs of the agri-food sector and rural communities, and open new opportunities for working and living in smaller and mid-sized communities across the province.
OFA has identified three key benefits for all Ontario when we distribute economic development across the province.
and job growth
Secure a sustainable
food production system
New investments in Ontario’s rural communities will grow existing businesses, attract new companies and boost opportunities for regional economic development. When you consider that Ontario’s agri-food sector is a leading economic engine for the province…investing in rural Ontario is an investment in a more prosperous province.
The agri-food sector contributes $39.5 billion to Ontario’s annual GDP
More than 822,000 jobs are generated by the agri-food sector
Ontario farms support $8.1 billion in annual wages and salaries
Investing in rural communities strengthens Ontario’s agri-food sector. By supporting a strong domestic agri-food industry – and investing in infrastructure that promotes activity across the province – all Ontarians will have access to safe, high-quality local food.
Ontario farmers have a long history of being sustainable stewards of the land, protecting our valuable resources. Farmers conserve land and water, and preserve soil quality, to grow the food we all need. Sound public policy to create economic opportunities in rural Ontario must be paired with thoughtful land-use policy that protects our vital agricultural resources for future generations.
The opportunities for the agri-food sector to continue to drive economic activity goes beyond the borders of Ontario. Supporting our ag sector and rural communities is a strong strategy across the country. Find out more about the Canadian Federation of Agriculture’s Producing Prosperity in Canada campaign.