Governments funding farmers’ move to online sales

Direct-to-consumer sales from farms has quickly moved digital

The challenge to stay open and maintain social distancing amidst COVID-19 is seeing many farmers markets move online.
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Many farmers have moved to marketing their food and plants through the internet and they now have the chance for government help to fund that transition.

The Ontario and Canadian governments are investing $2.5 million the new Agri-Food Open for E-Business initiative through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP).

Organizations and businesses can apply for a grant of up to $5000 to establish an online e-business and marketing presence.

Program applications in Ontario will be administered by OMAFRA and the goal is to move the money quickly to those who need it. OMAFRA will immediately accept applications or by calling: 1-877-424-1300. The projects should be complete by the end of November.

The governments of Canada and Ontario are investing up to $2.5 million to help the agri-food sector expand online, providing more opportunities for producers to grow their business and offer more food choices for families who are shopping from home during the COVID-19 outbreak. The funding is being provided through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (the Partnership).

The project is aimed at farmers, farmers markets, retailers, garden centres, greenhouse, nurseries and agricultural associations who have had to develop online presences to provide consumers with access to food and products. As Farmtario has reported on how suppliers of food directly from farms have faced unprecedented demand.

A second funding stream will be for organizations and businesses and collaborations who can apply for cost-share funding of up to $75,000 for high-impact projects.

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) will immediately accept applications and expedite the approval process to help businesses and organizations develop, expand and enhance their current online presence.

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