Applications open for the Ontario Agri-Food Research Initiative

MPP for Huron-Bruce, Lisa Thompson. (Photo by Bob Montgomery)

The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing $2.5 million to turn innovative ideas and solutions into marketable products. That’s according to Huron Bruce MPP Lisa Thompson, who is also the Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

A media release says the funding will strengthen Ontario’s agri-food sector and ensure Ontarians continue to have access to safe, high quality food. The Ontario Agri-Food Research Initiative has a new agreement with national non-profit business accelerator Bioenterprise Corporation.

They are now accepting proposals that will see innovative agri-food research ideas transformed into leading-edge technologies, services, and new market-ready products. The Initiative is also accepting applications for research streams that encourage stronger adoption of best management practices for on farm production. The deadline to submit applications is October 29, 2021.

“Innovation drives the research that propels Ontario’s farmers and food processors forward, and OMAFRA is championing innovation to grow and build the sector for the future,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of. “The new Bioenterprise partnership and this investment in commercializing research will help bring new products to market faster and strengthen the agri-food sector, while supporting the economy by helping businesses expand, creating jobs, and increasing the competitiveness of Ontario-made products in the domestic and global marketplaces.”

“Bioenterprise has long been deeply entrenched in Ontario’s agri-food and agri-tech ecosystem and having a partner like OMAFRA supporting the drive for innovation will mean big things for the sector and the economy,” said Dave Smardon, CEO of Bioenterprise. “With a focus on early-stage projects through market validation and product development activities, we are supporting a rich substrate of disruptive technologies that, with Minister Thompson’s and OMAFRA’s commitment, can create substantial increases in Ontario’s global competitiveness in agriculture.”

The partnership with Bioenterprise Corporation is part of the Ontario Agri-Food Research Initiative. Projects funded through this initiative are designed to increase competitiveness and to benefit all Ontarians by continuing to provide safe and healthy food while increasing trade opportunities for Ontario grown and made food items.