Ont. gov. Expands support for farmers in case of extreme weather, disease or change of market prices 

This golden field of wheat was photographed near South Mountain in very hot, dry conditions on Aug. 1, 2016. Zandbergen photo, Nation Valley News

ONTARIO — Yesterday, Jim McDonell MPP for Stormont-Dundas-South Glengarry, welcomed the government’s action to expand the Risk Management Program a year earlier than planned by $50 million for a total of $150 million annually. This funding supports farmers with unforeseen challenges such as fluctuating market prices, extreme weather events like flooding or drought, and disease. 

The announcement was made on July 16 by Premier Doug Ford, and Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. 

Approximately 80 percent of eligible commercial production in the cattle, hog, sheep, veal, grains and oilseeds, and edible horticulture sectors in Ontario is covered by the provincial Risk Management Program. 

The increased investment in the Risk Management Program is in addition to a $15 million Enhanced Agri-food Workplace Protection Program. Farmers and other operations have access to cost-share funding to help enhance health and safety measures for employees, such as purchasing personal protective equipment, medical testing equipment, enhanced cleaning and disinfection, and temporary or permanent modifications to enhance physical distancing. Support is also available for farmers who experience unexpected costs for housing and transportation as a result of a COVID-19 outbreak on their farm. 

“I want to thank my friend and colleague, Minister Ernie Hardeman, for all his dedication and hard work on getting a great deal for our farmers. The agri-food industry not only provides quality food to Ontarians, but it is also our largest employer,” said MPP Jim McDonell. 

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