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Canadian government helps food processing businesses lower costs

Investments by the governments of Canada and Ontario through the Sustainable Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Sustainable CAP) are resulting in over $16 million worth of energy cost savings projects to help food processing businesses increase energy efficiency and lower their costs.

The cost-shared funding, provided through the Agri-Food Energy Cost Savings Initiative, will help 30 food processors lower their energy costs to be more competitive and sustainable. The Initiative is focused on supporting projects that prioritize energy efficiency by investing in new technology, equipment, as well as building or facility modifications. This funding will contribute to an anticipated $3 million in annual operational cost savings for recipient businesses.

The Agri-Food Energy Cost Savings Initiative was developed following discussions with Ontario’s food processing industry. It is part of a series of initiatives the government has implemented to support food processing in the province, including committing up to $25 million through the Agri-Tech Innovation Initiative, for which applications open on February 15, 2024.

Some examples of investments made through this initiative included:

  • $6,368.70, for R. Denninger Limited, in Hamilton, to purchase a new pressure washing system that will reduce natural gas usage and operating costs.
  • Up to $16,819.61 for Front Road Cellars at Blueberry Hill, in Norfolk County, to install solar power systems, high-efficiency heat pumps, and radiant heat sources to make their operations more efficient and sustainable.
  • Up to $165,000 for Marini Foods Limited, in Toronto, to improve their roofing and HVAC to increase energy efficiency.

Sustainable CAP is a 5-year (2023-2028), $3.5-billion investment by federal, provincial, and territorial governments to strengthen competitiveness, innovation, and resiliency of the agriculture, agri‐food, and agri‐based products sector. This includes $1 billion in federal programs and activities and a $2.5 billion commitment that is cost-shared 60% federally and 40% provincially/territorially for programs designed and delivered by the provinces and territories.

“It’s vitally important that we continue to strengthen the agri-food sector in Ontario and right across the country,” said the Honourable Lawrence MacAulay, federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. “This new funding will help our food processors make their operations more sustainable and energy efficient while protecting their bottom line.”

Under the Agri-Food Energy Cost Savings Initiative, applicants could receive up to 20% cost share funding for eligible costs, to a maximum of $300,000, per business. Projects supported through the initiative are to be completed by March 31, 2025.

“Ontario is the food processing hub of Canada, and our government is bringing forward a number of programs like the Agri-food Energy Cost Savings Initiative to create the best environment for this sector to continue to grow, produce more food, and provide more jobs. Through this Initiative and a host of other actions, we’re making significant progress in achieving the ambitious targets set out in our Grow Ontario Strategy,” Lisa Thompson, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.

For more information:
Government of Canada

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