Agriculture Leadership Certificate Program - Open for Registration
Understanding the economic importance of agriculture in Ontario is crucial. With a growing population, it is vital that we invest in educating and informing individuals about the economic importance of agriculture and the agri-food business in Ontario's economy.
That's why the University of Ontario Institute of Technology is offering its Agriculture Leadership Program for a second year.
Economic Development
Economic Developers: Change Agents Building Canadian Communities
2 min read

This year's Economic Development Association of Canada's  annual conference, hosted a full slate of speakers that inspired economic development professionals from across Canada. Speakers Bruce Kirkby, Nicole Verkindt, Darcy Lang and Terry O'Reilly, spoke of the ability and impact economic development professionals have to be change agents within their communities, through both traditional and non-traditional avenues.

6 Vital Attributes of Successful BR+E Projects
2 min read

OMAFRA's Rick Berthiaume recently presented the evolution of Ontario's Business Retention and Expansion (BR+E) program to the International Economic Development Council's annual conference.
During his presentation he highlighted six vital attributes of successful BRE projects. These  include:
  • well trained volunteers,
  • commitment,
  • buy-in and engagement from stakeholders,
  • demonstrate importance of local business, accurately accessing the importance of local business community,
  • building networks in the community,
  • develop and implement action plans.
Read more ...  
Agriculture Development
Bull Selection in Ontario
Barry Potter, Agriculture Development Advisor, OMAFRA - Virtual Beef
5 min read

What kind of bull do you want? There are as many colours, shapes, and sizes of bulls as you can think of on the market today. Perhaps the market is the best place to start. What kind of calf do you want to sell? And what kind of cow do you want to keep to obtain that calf?

Bull selection in Ontario used to be much simpler. Provincial bull evaluation centres allowed commercial producers to compare many different breeding programs at one location. All bulls received the same diet, and were evaluated for growth, muscle and fat deposition. A producer run organization, Beef Improvement Ontario (BIO), compiled all the collected data, and used genetic equations to create economic selection indices for two streams of commercial farms. But that was the 1980's and 90's. What can a producer do today to find a bull that works with his/her cow herd?

Updated Minimum Distance Separation Software
2 min read

The Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) updated the Minimum Distance Separation (MDS) Document to make the guidelines clearer and the implementation of MDS more effective. The new version takes effect on March 1, 2017.
Farmers will not be greatly impacted by the changes to the MDS Document. MDS I will continue to protect farm operations from intruding land uses, and MDS II will continue to apply to new building permits.
The MDS software was updated to reflect the changes to the MDS Document. You can find the MDS software in the Ontario Agricultural Planning Tools Suite , or AgriSuite, an online system that also houses NMAN, OMAFRA's nutrient management planning software.

Nominations open for Ontario's Outstanding Young Farmer 
2 min read

The Outstanding Young Farmers Program (OYF) is a unique program designed to recognize farmers and farm couples who exemplify excellence in their profession. Any organization or any person can nominate a young farmer or couple for the regional recognition award as long as the nominee meets the following program eligibility requirements:
*    Must be between the ages of 18 and 39
*    Be farm operators
*    Derive a minimum of two-thirds of their income from farming

Nominations for the 2017 Award are now open. The nomination form is  here . Forms are due no later than January 15, 2017.


Dateline: online calendar for events, workshops and conferences

OMAFRA Contact Centre 1-877-424-1300