The Ontario Farm Fresh Marketing Association, with 100 members in the Greenbelt, is developing a marketing strategy to increase the number of repeat customers and the frequency of their visits to these on-farm markets. An outreach plan will attract new visitors including members of the GTA’s diverse ethnic communities; create seasonal, low-cost promotional activities for OFFMA; and pursue co-marketing opportunities with other tourism operators in the Greenbelt. The project promotes agriculture and farms in the Greenbelt and Ontario.
The "Economic Impact Study Regarding Viability of Fruit and Vegetable Industry within the Greenbelt" project will assist the long-term goal of establishing policies to maintain the viability of this sector. The study produces an economic impact statement about the value of industry today and the impact of government policies, such as the Greenbelt. It also explores new activities such as developing value-added products, undertaking product research and creating strategic marketing alliances.
The replant strategy converts up to 25% of total acreage from juice grape production to wine grapes, which typically experience higher market demand.
Representing over 600 grape growers in eastern, southern and southwestern Ontario, the Grape Growers of Ontario provides resources and support to maintain a healthy market for grape growers.Farmers in Niagara face an uncertain future after a local company announced an end to manufacturing grape juice. Many of these farmers want to transition to growing new products, including high quality wine grape varieties that would elevate Niagara’s reputation as a world renowned wine region. This project invests in that goal.
A forum is held where the agricultural community and policy makers can speak about Greenbelt issues together. The forum is designed to promote a clear understanding of the need and importance of Ontario’s Greenbelt.
The Greenbelt is highlighted as the title sponsor of “The Taste of Niagara Fine Foods and Wines” event at the 5th Annual Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Convention. The convention attracts over 1,100 participants including growers, allied trades, government managers and staff. Over 800 people attend this event, featuring Niagara chefs serving local food and wine.
Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers' Association represents 28 commodity-based farm associations in the province and serves as the official representative for the province's fruit and vegetable sector to national and international bodies.
The Farm to School pilot project reconnects urban students and rural farmers in Peel Region through farm visits, local food celebrations and a local, healthy snack program for elementary schools. Food is sourced from Greenbelt farms, helping to strengthen linkages between schools and farmers. The pilot is expected to heighten awareness amongst students about local food and the Greenbelt
The project contributes to the development of three new seasonal farmers' markets in under-serviced neighbourhoods in Hamilton, by researching market models, local need and farmer interests. The research is expected to identify opportunities to expand consumer markets for area Greenbelt farmers to sell/deliver their produce in the Hamilton region, while consumers are encouraged to buy locally-farmed food.
The annual fair, featuring agriculture, arts and music, is celebrating its 150thanniversary. Once a year, the community comes together to share, celebrate and foster their rural legacy with events like the Port Perry Agricultural Heritage Parade and activities like the Agricultural Heritage Tent. The Port Perry High School cheerleading team and the Port Perry Rebels serve as ambassadors for the Fair, bringing with them their youthful energy and enthusiasm. This vibrant Greenbelt community event looks forward to its next 150 years.
AGCare provides science and policy research on environmental and agricultural issues in Ontario, and is forming collaborative relationships between the farming and trail communities to increase awareness of agricultural stewardship.
Colourful signage is created and erected throughout trails in the Greenbelt to communicate to hikers about the environmental stewardship activities and best management practices of farmers. Messages about the Greenbelt are incorporated into the text, with an overarching aim of increasing public awareness and recognition of farmers’ contributions to the environment.