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Fruit and vegetable growers welcome funding to protect farm workers

Guelph ON  – Ontario’s fruit and vegetable growers are pleased with the announcement of financial supports from the federal and provincial governments to protect agricultural workers on Ontario farms during the COVID-19 outbreak.
 
The funding can be used for things like buying personal protective equipment, enhanced cleaning and disinfection, and adapting work areas and living spaces to ensure physical distancing as part of efforts to keep essential frontline workers in the agri-food sector safe.
 
“The health and safety of farm workers is of utmost importance to all fruit and vegetable growers and this funding will help us ensure we can continue to safely provide food for Canadians,” says OFVGA Chair Bill George. “Like many other Canadian businesses, the pandemic has burdened growers with unexpected additional expenses for everything from quarantining and housing workers to adapting equipment and modifying workflows, and this support is a really great start by the federal and provincial governments to help us cover some of those costs.”
 
The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs is now accepting applications through its Agri-food Workplace Protection Program, which is part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. “We welcome the opportunity to work collaboratively with both levels or government to re-assess and re-evaluate ongoing needs for fruit and vegetable growers and the sector’s value chain as the pandemic continues to unfold,” he adds.
 
The OFVGA continues to closely monitor the impacts of COVID-19 on fruit and vegetable growers and the edible horticulture value chain, and has provided both an assessment and detailed recommendations to the federal and provincial governments. 
Source : OFVGA