Expanding Thunder Bay Area Farms
Province Helps Increase Farm Productivity in the North
Ontario is helping Thunder Bay area farmers improve their agricultural land, diversify crops and expand their businesses.
Bill Mauro, MPP for Thunder Bay-Atikokan, was in Thunder Bay today to announce funding through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) to install tile drainage on 1,390 acres of land and to undertake land clearing on 354 acres, a project led by the Thunder Bay Agricultural Research Association in partnership with 23 local farms.
This partnership between the Thunder Bay Agricultural Research Association and the farm businesses is ensuring the long-term sustainability of area farms. The new tile drainage system and land clearing will help farmers increase their crop yields by providing more available land for production and will help reduce soil erosion which will extend the growing season.
Investing in agricultural infrastructure in the North is part of Ontario's plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.
- Ontario is investing $994,080 in this project through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) Strategic Economic Infrastructure Program.
- Since 2013, the province has invested more than $621 million through the NOHFC in over 3,845 projects, leveraging more than $2.2 billion in direct economic activity and creating or sustaining over 15,300 jobs in Northern Ontario.
- In the Thunder Bay-Atikokan region, the NOHFC has invested more than $44 million in 253 projects that have helped create or retain more than 1,200 jobs since 2013.
“The agricultural industry is a key economic driver in many northern communities. By investing in these operations, our government is helping farmers in the Northwest create fairness and opportunity by investing in improvements to their farmland that will increase their crop production and grow the northern economy.”
“I’m very pleased with today’s announcement of funding to the Thunder Bay Agricultural Research Association for tile drainage and land clearing projects at area farms. Our farms are critical to our local and regional economy, as well as the overall wellness and social fabric of our communities. Today’s announcement is a continuation of our support for the local agricultural community and builds on the recent announcement concerning Lakehead University’s role in the governance of the Thunder Bay Agricultural Research Station, which secures the long term future of the Station. These announcements, and many others, demonstrate that the province understands just how important the agricultural sector is in Northwestern Ontario.”
“The Thunder Bay Agricultural Research Association is excited to continue our role representing district farmers pursuing sustainable technologies and business development strategies. The support from Ontario for this program recognizes the potential of farmers to expand contributions to the local economy and communities through increased food production and employment opportunities.”