Province invests $6M into local businesses to boost London-area economy

(Left to right) Vice-president for Shogun Maitake Joe Fontana, Elgin-Middlesex-London MPP Jeff Yurek, Shogun Maitake Canada CEO Yoshinodu Odaira and Economic Development Minister Vic Fedeli. October 13, 2021. (Photo via @VictorFedeli on Twitter)

The Ontario government has announced an investment to help create more manufacturing and agri-food jobs in the London-area.

During an announcement Wednesday, Economic Development Minister Vic Fedeli said $6-million will be doled out through the Regional Development Program to five companies located in the region which will help create 134 jobs and hold on to 133 jobs.

“These projects are making a significant impact in communities and economies across London and southwestern Ontario by helping to secure private-sector investments to create conditions for long-term economic growth and build an economy that makes Ontario the best place in the world to do business, work and raise a family,” said Fedeli.

As part of the investment, Ontario is pumping $4.5-million of the funds to Shogun Maitake, a mushroom production facility that’s planning to spend over $30-million to build a new production facility and purchase new equipment with the money from the province to process maitake mushrooms for the agri-pharm and bio-pharmaceutical industries. The company plans to add 60 new jobs by expanding operations and anticipates that it will begin selling a maitake health supplement sometime next year.

Additionally, Attica Manufacturing, Algonquin Bridge, Arva Industries and Planet Shrimp, a brand of RAS Technologies are among the other businesses that will benefit from the investment. On top of funds put forward by the companies, the businesses have stated they intend to use the provincial investments towards creating 74 new jobs, expanding operations and buying new equipment.

“The Elgin-Middlesex-London region is home to a world-class manufacturing sector that represents a critical component of the provincial economy,” said the area’s MPP Jeff Yurek. “I am very pleased to see the continued innovation and growth these businesses are bringing to our community as we prepare for a strong economic recovery.”

Launched in November 2019, the Regional Development Program was created so businesses in eastern and southwestern Ontario can get financial support that bolsters local communities, attracts investment, diversifies their economies, and creates jobs.