According to a KPMG study, every one litre of domestic wine sales contribute $8.48 to the economy, in comparison to a $0.67 for sales of imported wines (Wine Council of Ontario, 2008).
In the face of high disease incidence from international rootstock importations, the Grape Growers of Ontario are working to create a healthy, domestic supply of grape vines under a new certification system.
The Grape Growers of Ontario, along with the University of Guelph and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, recognize the importance of developing a domestic supply of grape vines from material propagated right here in Ontario. A feasibility study determines the viability of creating such a supply in order to contribute to a sustainable domestic wine industry in the Greenbelt to continue our rich tradition of viticulture.
40,000 copies of the Eat Local Map were distributed in 2008, which now includes 65 Greenbelt and Hamilton area farmers.
Aiming to build a local food network in the City of Hamilton, Farm Fresh Hamilton expands supplies of local Greenbelt-grown foods into markets, business and schools in the area, and promotes the bounty of foods that the Greenbelt has to offer through communication materials.
The City of Hamilton is buzzing about local food as residents use the new Hamilton Eat Local Map to find farmers and products in their area, to fill their cupboards with fresh and prepared food from area farms. Even restaurants and stores find the maps handy and are adding locally-grown food items to their menus and shelves.
MentorLINK is an exciting internship program being established to link up new farmer interns with professionals who can provide technical farming and business planning assistance.
Immigrants face many obstacles when attempting to become farmers, but a new initiative by the University of Guelph’s Centre for Land and Water Stewardship helps support and ease new farmers into successful farming relationships in Ontario.
The University of Guelph’s Centre for Land and Water Stewardship supports new farmers in the Greenbelt by offering multiple tours of the regions, successfully planting plots of 6 ethno-cultural crops, and providing training and resources to help new farmers onto their feet.
The David Suzuki Foundation will complete an economic assessment of the non-market value of the Greenbelt’s natural capital or “ecological goods and services,” providing an economic rationale for maintaining the Greenbelt in the Ontario landscape permanently. It will be a great contribution not only in support for the protection of the Greenbelt but for its expansion.
The ‘Greenbelt Express’ builds public transit links from cities to recreational cycling activities in the Greenbelt and works with host communities to promote cycling tourism and the Greenbelt. The project expands the success of the pilot ‘Toronto to Niagara Bike Train,’ which is a sustainable tourism and transportation initiative that introduces bike racks onboard VIA Rail Canada service between Toronto and the Niagara Region. The Bike Train provides cyclists with a unique and sustainable transportation option for travel between the two regions. The Chamber of Commerce is working closely with Niagara area businesses and community leaders to promote the region as a great cycling destination.
The My Market project is expected to strengthen the role of farmers’ markets in the Golden Horseshoe’s local urban food system by creating a new model of farmers’ markets that feature 100% real farmers selling what they grow and opening four new certified farmers’ markets (with farmer-only vendors) in City of Toronto locations. A promotional strategy advertises My Markets and the Greenbelt, while recruiting Greenbelt farmers to participate at these markets.
Promotion of fruit wine at farmers’ markets
The project promotes the sale of fruit wines at farmers markets, which requires changes to current provincial legislation.
The 10 km Nature Walk for the Environment takes place on the Waterfront Trail in Hamilton. Hundreds of participants learn about nature through interpretive signage and raise money for local environmental projects. This year's campaign focuses on the Cartwright Nature Sanctuary, helping to build awareness of one of the important ecological treasures in the Hamilton area. The walk is proceeding from the Waterfront Trail in Hamilton into Cootes Paradise in the Greenbelt.
Eneract, a charitable organization committed to delivering innovative solutions to environmental problems since 1994, in partnership with Green Enterprises Toronto produces a Smartliving Guide, which is a listing of environmentally-friendly businesses, products and services for customers. It serves as a forum for local, particularly small, green businesses to build their market base, providing information on household products, services, food and drink, green cleaning supplies, transportation options, and health and beauty.
The Greenbelt Discovery Tours project captures over 400 points of interest through images and innovative mapping tools, available for tourists to download directly to their personal communication devices.
High tech meets low-impact as visitors to Niagara’s Greenbelt access tourism activities online and at four major Niagara Tourism Centres. Visitors discover a dynamic Greenbelt by selecting activities from an extensive community database of Niagara’s ‘best keep secret’ destinations and experiences. Written and audio-based overviews of specific destinations or multimedia thematic cycling, hiking and transit tours can be downloaded, while Directional GPS coordinates automatically trigger directional information on portable digital devices.Read more