Supporting Local Food and Beverage Businesses

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Ontario and Canada Boosting Partner to Grow Ontario’s Food and Beverage Industry

The provincial and federal governments are partnering to grow Ontario’s food and beverage processing sector by supporting local businesses to increase productivity, meet consumer demand and create good jobs.

Lou Rinaldi, MPP for Northumberland-Quinte West made the announcement at Canadian Blast Freezers Ltd. in Trenton today, along with Bay of Quinte MP Neil Ellis on behalf of Federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Lawrence MacAulay. With support provided through Growing Forward 2 (GF2), a federal-provincial-territorial initiative, the company will upgrade lighting at their processing facility (energy efficient LED bulbs and fixtures), leading to increased energy efficiency and leveraging innovation to grow their business and the local economy.

Canadian Blast Freezers is one of over 300 Ontario food and beverage processors enhancing their competitiveness, innovating through the introduction of new products and creating new jobs thanks to support through GF2.

These investments help achieve the federal government’s goal to create good middle class jobs by helping food processors develop products that reflect changing market tastes and seize new market opportunities.

Helping grow the agri-food sector is part of Ontario’s plan to create fairness and opportunity during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes a higher minimum wage and better working conditions, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, easier access to affordable child care, and free prescription drugs for everyone under 25 through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation.



“By investing in businesses such as Canadian Blast Freezers Ltd. we are helping boost the competitiveness of Ontario’s food and beverage processing sector. For the last five years, Growing Forward 2 has been integral in strengthening Ontario’s agri-food sector and I look forward to building on its success through the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.”

— Jeff Leal, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs


“Food and beverage businesses form the largest employer of all manufacturing industries in Canada, accounting for one out of every eight jobs. Investing in the growth and innovation of these Ontario companies will contribute to our government’s goal of increasing Canada’s agri-food exports to $75-billion by 2025 and supporting the creation of good middle class jobs.”

Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada


“By investing in local businesses such as Canadian Blast Freezers Ltd., our government is supporting the economic growth of Eastern Ontario while building up our province’s food and beverage processing sector. I’m pleased to be here today to see first-hand the results of our investments, which are helping grow communities like Northumberland – Quinte West and our province’s broader agri-food sector.”

— Lou Rinaldi, MPP Northumberland-Quinte West


“We are very fortunate to have a great number of agri-food companies here in the Bay of Quinte riding. That’s why I am so pleased that food and beverage processors in Ontario are receiving almost $18 million in funding to help them grow their services and expand production.”

— Neil Ellis, MP Bay of Quinte


“Canadian Blast Freezers Ltd. appreciates the support of both the federal and provincial governments through important industry initiatives like the Growing Forward 2 program; along with strong support from our regional representatives MPP Lou Rinaldi, MP Neil Ellis and the Quinte Economic Development Commission.  The Growing Forward 2 program has helped us reduce costs, improve productivity; invest in new technology and expand into new markets. This has resulted in new jobs and increased opportunities for our employees.”


— Scott Willard CEO and Dale Willard President – Canadian Blast Freezers Ltd.



  • The provincial and federal governments are investing almost $18 million towards more than 300 projects across the province as part of this announcement. Canadian Blast Freezers Ltd., in Trenton, received $36,210 for a first-time upgrade of lighting at its processing facility (energy efficient LED bulbs and fixtures).
  • Approximately $254,093 has been invested in five projects across Hastings and Prince Edward County:
    • Sandbanks Estate Winery Inc. received $35,350 to purchase specialized equipment to produce new innovative wine to expand markets.
    • 2202558 Ontario Limited o/a Mill Creek Farm received $99,999 to purchase, install and update packaging equipment to increase labour productivity.
    • Pasta Tavola will receive up to $36,400 to purchase and install an upgraded pasta machine and kitchen equipment to help increase labour productivity and efficiency.
    • County Cider Company Inc. received $46,132 to purchase and install equipment to help expand export sales.
  • GF2 was launched in 2013 and is a five-year commitment by Canada’s federal, provincial and territorial governments to support Canada’s agri-food and agri-based products sector.
  • The provincial and federal governments have committed more than $50 million in cost-shared funding assistance to eligible food and beverage processors towards more than 950 GF2
  • The Canadian Agricultural Partnership will follow Growing Forward 2, launching on April 1, 2018.

Photo – Left to Right –  MP Neil Ellis, Dale Willard CEO, MPP Lou Rinaldi, Scott Willard, President

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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