Helping Ontario Farming Sectors Find New Markets

Published on September 03, 2019

Governments launch Market Access Initiative to help open markets for Ontario farm products


TORONTO - The Government of Canada and Government of Ontario are taking action to help Ontario food and agri-product exporters pursue new markets.

Effective today, the Ontario government will accept applications for the Market Access Initiative, a new cost-share funding initiative open to all Ontario food and agri-product exporters to assist them in accessing new markets. The Market Access Initiative will assist with diversification projects and is supported through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (the Partnership).

"Through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, we are investing in collaborative and innovative solutions to industry challenges. The Government is committed to creating good jobs for our families by helping our farmers and processors in Ontario and across Canada to compete and succeed in markets at home and around the world," said the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.

 "The quality of Ontario's farm products has and always will be among the best in the world - and trade disputes don't change this. We're pleased to apply the Canadian Agricultural Partnership to help expand markets for Ontario's agri-food industry and to support the sector in its efforts to innovate and be open for business," said Ernie Hardeman, Ontario's Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

 "Trade disputes have taken a heavy toll on Ontario pork producers in the last two years," said Eric Schwindt, chair of Ontario Pork. "We thank both governments for this market access initiative and look forward to working with them to ensure producers across all commodities receive equitable consideration."

"Today's announcement recognizes the costs that the escalating trade disruptions and barriers are having on the competitiveness and viability of the Ontario beef sector. BFO thanks our federal and provincial partners for their swift initiation of the Market Access Initiative and commitment to find solutions to help mitigate the critical market access challenges facing our sector," said Joe Hill, President, Beef Farmers of Ontario.

"The global marketplace is in turmoil right now, and farmers are being negatively impacted through no fault of their own. Today's announcement of a fund for new market development for Ontario grains, pork and beef is welcome," said Markus Haerle, Chair, Grain Farmers of Ontario.

Through the Market Access Initiative, sector organizations and businesses can apply for cost-share support for eligible activities that diversify markets for Ontario food products. Eligible projects will include activities such as developing plans to access new international or domestic markets and engaging in new marketing activities to achieve this outcome.

To date, both the federal and Ontario governments have committed cost-share support to more than 2,000 projects through the Partnership to help eligible farmers, processors, other businesses and sector organizations innovate and grow.

Quick Facts

  • The Market Access Initiative will be delivered by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. For more information or to access the program materials and applications forms, visit today, or call 1-877-424-1300.
  • The Market Access Initiative application intake will review applications as received and remain open until funding budgeted for the initiative is no longer available.
  • Ontario offers additional Market Development programming under the Place to Grow: Agri-Food Innovation Initiative which may be more appropriate for some potential applicants. The first intake for the Place to Grow: Agri-Food Innovation Initiative is available from August 15th, 2019 to September 27th, 2019.
  • The Canadian Agricultural Partnership is a five-year, $3-billion commitment by Canada's federal, provincial and territorial governments that supports Canada's agri-food and agri-products sectors.
  • The Partnership’s priority areas are:

Additional Resources