OFA president stresses agriculture important to province in moving forward

Keith Currie, President of the OFA. (Submitted photo)

The president of the OFA says the Ontario budget is something the federation can support.

One of the biggest focus is the $680 million over the next four years to expand rural broadband access.

Keith Currie says providing access to the latest technology is a key to give rural Ontario the tools its need to help move the province forward.

“It instills confidence in investing into the sector both by farmers on the ground and the entire value chain has confidence that we can invest in the agri-food system,” said Currie. “One that is pushing $50 billion annual Gross Domestic Product and employing 840,000 people.”

One of the spots that still needs some attention is the processing capacity for meat.

Currie says that will have to come in the form of regulations to spur investment.

“The government themselves are not going to build abattoirs and processing plants,” added Currie. “Setting the regulatory form to make these businesses operate more fluidly and easily, and attracting interest in further expansion in perhaps taking some of these monies and using them for expansion.”

Currie adds there seems to be a realization around the provincial table that agriculture will be a major player in the province’s recovery plans.