March 2018 

Last year,  Grape Growers of Ontario began working with  VineView to bring one-of-a-kind innovation overhead Niagara Region vineyards.

The drone and airplane-based technology is providing grape growers around the globe with unprecedented measurements of grapevine health, and has been a mighty leap forward for the Niagara wine industry,  maximizing efficiency and increasing healthy yields.

"Grape Growers of Ontario are always looking for new ways to invest in research and innovation in order to produce the highest quality grapes possible," shares CEO of Grape Growers of Ontario, Debbie Zimmerman.

Learn more on our blog.

The Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance, in partnership with the Toronto Region Conservation Authority, is among 15 recipients from across the province to receive funding for exciting local food projects through the Greenbelt Fund. Read more on our blog.

We are thankful and thrilled to receive $20,000 in funding for our project, Serving Up Local Food Training at Long-Term Care FacilitiesThe project builds on the success of our two-year local food procurement initiative, Serving Up Local, adding a comprehensive local food literacy initiative to train long-term care professionals and frontline staff on local food offerings. 

The training kicked off to a great start last week, with long-term care staff in Halton Region learning about new Ontario foods on their menus and how to engage residents in the new options. Stay tuned for more exciting information!

The City of Toronto has launched an UrbanHensTO Pilot Program, allowing residents in four wards across the city to register to have up to 4 hens on their residential property. The pilot will run for 3 years, until March 2021. 

"Cities need to enable the widest possible range of urban food production options to meet residents' need for local, fresh food and regain their sense of control over local food systems," shares Rhonda Teitel-Payne, Co-Coordinator with Toronto Urban Growers

Read more on our blog, including information on upcoming informational workshops in the pilot wards.

On World Water Day, the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) released the 2018 Toronto and Region Watershed Report Cards.

Although--in terms of the four indicators looked at--not much has significantly changed since the last report cards five years ago, some important issues are rising that aren't covered by the current set of indicators.

In particular, chloride from road salt, which can negatively impact agricultural lands and operations, is increasing in streams and in Lake Ontario, even though some municipalities have been working to reduce the amount of road salt used for de-icing. Read more.

Mark your calendars for a  workshop for planners and economic developers on  Wednesday, May 2, 2018, designed to help attendees understand and implement the Agriculture System at the local level.

The Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance and the Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation are hosting this workshop at the East Gwillimbury Sports Complex. Visit our website for the workshop program.

Halton Region's 6th annual  Agricultural Forum is coming up on Thursday, April 12, from 7 - 9 p.m. at Country Heritage Park in Milton.
This year's forum will focus on initiatives that will help local farms and food businesses drive growth and innovation in the agriculture and food sector. The event is free to attend.

Visit our website for more information on speakers and topics.

Durham Region residents are invited to attend the annual Farm Connections Open House on Wednesday, April 4, at the Luther Vipond Memorial Arena in Brooklin, Ontario.

The family-friendly, interactive event provides attendees with an opportunity to learn about agriculture through various stations, including meeting with farmers and livestock; as well as learning about dairy, beef, pork, poultry, sheep, land stewardship, vegetables, apples and crops.

Check out the Durham Farm Connections website for more information.
Janet Horner, Executive Director,
Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance