February 2016

Durham Foods has once again proven that their innovative roots dig deep. Not only is the family-run business breaking ground (or water, rather) by growing spinach hydroponically in Port Perry, but their team has now created the "GAP app", for which President Jim Sheehan accepted a Leadership in Innovation Award last year.

Sheehan and his team have taken the manuals from CanadaGAP and translated them into a user-friendly app, simplifying the many exhaustive records and manuals that food producers and processors must maintain for food safety and traceability certification.

Read more on Durham Foods and their innovative App in our latest blog post.

The start to a recent Globe and Mail article reads, "Amid a rout in global steel markets, the port that serves Canada's steel town has found a new focus: food. "

The piece highlights a new optimism at the port, with the construction of a third grain terminal, a new flour mill and the arrival of a handful of agri-food companies. You may recall our previous blog posts on the new $50 million shipping terminal, and the state-of-the-art flour mill

The Globe and Mail explains that in the past five years, agri-food companies at the port have grown to about 14 among more than $200-million of investments. And since 2009, the amount of grain and fertilizer moving through the port has more than doubled to 1.7 million tonnes in 2015.  Read more here.
Registration is now open for the  Ontario Climate Change Symposium  on  May 5, 2016.   This year's Symposium will focus on  the agriculture and agri-food sector in the Greater Golden Horseshoe region.

Join the engaging discussion and panels at Rozanski Hall at the University of Guelph to learn about cutting-edge research and best practice policy and initiatives that address climate change in Ontario. Discounted early-bird registration is open until March 18th.
The Headwaters Food and Farming Alliance (HFFA) is in the midst of developing a Food Charter to define a common vision for "a healthy, fair, prosperous and sustainable food system in the Headwaters Region."

Upcoming consultations are being held to continue the gathering of input for the Charter; they are looking for individuals, representative of the health and wellbeing, social services and food access, economic development, environmental responsibility, food production, food culture/culinary tourism to share their perspectives during these consultations.

Consultations will be taking place on March 2nd (Caledon), March 8th (Orangeville), April 20th (Orangeville) and April 27th (Owen Sound).  Visit the HFFA website for more information and to register. 

Have an agri-food innovation that should be recognized like Durham Foods and Jim Sheehan?  It's that time of year again - primary producers, farmers, processors and agri-food organizations are invited to apply for a Premier's Innovation Award 

If you've developed and implemented a unique product or process that helps  foster innovation in Ontario's agriculture and food sector,  you could be eligible to receive one of the following awards from the Premier's Award for Agri-Food Innovation Excellence Program:
-        Premier's Award (one award valued at $75,000)
-        Minister's Award (one award valued at $50,000)
-        Leaders in Innovation Awards (three awards valued at $25,000 each)
-        Provincial Awards (45 awards valued at $5,000 each)
For more information, be sure to visit the province's website.
Janet Horner, Executive Director,
Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance