March 2022
A MESSAGE FROM THE AAC EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Greetings ,

As we enter March, there is a lot to look forward to as we get closer to spring and turn our thoughts to warmer temperatures and longer days.

At the Agricultural Adaptation Council (AAC), the staff and board have been busy preparing for the delivery of two new funding programs, the Livestock Veterinary Innovation Initiative and the Ontario Agri-Careers Support Initiative. These two programs are funded in part through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, a five-year federal-provincial-territorial initiative, and we are pleased to be delivering them on behalf of the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. You can learn more about the new funding programs below.

AAC recently participated in the Ontario Food Summit, hosted by Lisa Thompson, provincial Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. We are excited to further our mission and do our part by continuing to work with our membership and applicants to assist in building a stronger and more resilient agriculture and food sector and to help feed Ontarians.

In the coming months, the AAC team is looking forward to reviewing applications from Ontario-based veterinarians and food processors, through the new funding programs, and working with our greenhouse and genomics applicants, as they wrap-up their projects through the Greenhouse Competiveness and Innovation Initiative and Ontario Regional Priorities Partnership Program. Lastly, as we start planning for our summer membership event and AGM, we are excited for networking and interacting in-person after two years of virtual events.

If you have any questions, please reach out to any member of the AAC team.

Sincerely,
Melanie DiReto, AAC Executive Director 
ONTARIO AGRI-CAREERS SUPPORT INITIATIVE
The Ontario Agri-Careers Support Initiative (Initiative) is aimed at growing the labour market for food processing businesses by either enticing people to become employed by food processors or remain employed by food processors. The Initiative has been designed to support innovative pilot projects that are tailor-made to address specific needs of employees at a community-based level so food processors can attract and retain workers.

Eligible applicants are Ontario-based food processors that have over 100 employees at the time of application. Food processors include operational businesses that are manufacturers and currently directly involved in the transformation of agricultural commodities, foods, beverages or agri-based bio-products in Ontario that:

  • are heavily impacted by labour shortages; and
  • have the capacity to pilot innovative solutions to attract and retain employees.

Businesses can apply on their own or as a business collaboration.

The first deadline to apply for the Initiative is April 7, 2022.  

Further information can be found in the Program Guide or on the AAC website.
LIVESTOCK VETERINARY INNOVATION INITIATIVE
The Livestock Veterinary Innovation Initiative (the Initiative) is aimed at supporting innovative approaches to increase delivery options of veterinary care to livestock farmers, particularly in Underserviced Areas to support animal health, the livestock agri-food sector and the strength of our food supply.

The Applicant must be an Ontario-based, food animal veterinary practice and/or mixed veterinary animal practice that includes food animals.

Eligible projects include those that help support activities that will increase delivery options of veterinary care to support food animal health under the following categories.

  • Telemedicine Diagnostic: support for telemedicine and/or diagnostic (i.e. mobile/cellular and video/camera and monitor solutions; veterinary hematology analyzers; vehicle modifications)
  • Handling Equipment: support for portable large animal handling equipment such as head gates and squeeze chutes, associated vehicle modifications
  • Education/Training: support for education and training on new equipment or techniques 

There is currently a continuous intake running from February 15, 2022 to March 31, 2022. All applications received will be evaluated according to the review phases outlined in the Program Guide on a first-come-first-serve basis, as long as funds remain available for the Initiative.