Ottawa invests $ 7.2 million in increasing London’s agri-food sector, creating 550 jobs – London


The federal government is investing $ 7.2 million in The Grove, an agribusiness hub in the Western Fair District in London, Ontario.

According to official data, the investment made by FedDev Ontario will bring together “infrastructure, capital, mentoring, training and innovation in agriculture” and will create 550 jobs and maintain 100 additional jobs.

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According to FedDev Ontario, The Grove offers individual spaces for growing food companies such as LiveFitFoods and The Fritter Shop, which have already established themselves in the Grove, as well as a “unique incubation environment” with shared production and packaging facilities.

“Now that we’ve been approved as applicants for The Grove, we can now increase our production and grow our business much faster,” said Kelvin Van Rijn, owner of the fritter shop.

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London West MP Kate Young tweeted that the announcement will “create 550 jobs and 100 more here in London by expanding The Grove in the Western Fair District to build and develop food and beverage companies.”

1:45For Canadian families, food prices are projected to increase by an average of $ 700 in 2021

Food prices for Canadian families are projected to increase by an average of $ 700 from 2021 to December 8, 2020

Mayor Ed Holder called it an investment not just in the grove, but “in sustainability, food security and community”.

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He added that The Grove and London’s entire food and beverage sector are well positioned to become “even bigger drivers of London’s post-COVID economy”.

The Grove is also supported by numerous local agencies, organizations and companies.

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A private fund set up by RH Accelerator will support up to 20 start-ups through a year-long program that offers a milestone-based business planning process and personal mentoring.

Federal funding, as well as support from the Libro Credit Union, will also allow the Small Business Center and the London Economic Development Corporation to expand existing programs to create and grow food businesses across the region.

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“We are thrilled to be working with like-minded organizations in building a support ecosystem for food and beverage entrepreneurs,” said Steve Bolton, CEO of Libro, in a statement.

“Local food accessibility and employment are two areas in which Libro is focusing its efforts to increase the affluence of southwestern Ontario. This exciting initiative will have a significant impact on the region.”

The not-for-profit London Training Center will also provide skills training “essential to the growth of this industry” while Western University and its colleges and Fanshawe College will “nurture the talent needed to grow London’s food and beverage sector “. FedDev says.

There are currently around 100 food companies in London employing more than 7,000 people.

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