The Ontario government is offering $10 million to permit extra farmers and agri-food operators to buy private protecting tools (PPE), improve cleansing and disinfection measures, and redesign workstations to higher shield staff.
Beneath the brand new Enhanced Agri-Meals Office Safety Program (EAWPP), farms and agri-food companies that rent three or extra staff shall be eligible for funding.
Extra companies and staff shall be eligible together with: corn detasselers, transporters, hatcheries, and first processing (i.e., slicing, cleansing, packaging, storage and refrigeration of uncooked plant meals).
Ernie Hardeman, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Meals, and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA), says it’s vital that the government takes each step doable to shield employee well being and security, whereas guaranteeing the province’s meals producers proceed working.
“The men and women on our farms and in the agri-food sector are essential workers on the front lines of the pandemic and deserve our support and appreciation,” Hardeman explains.
The funding will assist farmers who expertise surprising prices for short-term or momentary housing and transportation because of a COVID-19 outbreak amongst on-farm staff. As well as, elevated flexibility has been constructed into this system to guarantee it will possibly reply to rising points and dangers.
Peggy Brekveld, president of the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) says they encourage farm companies battling PPE shortages to make the most of these assets to “protect the health and safety of our essential workforce,” including that extending funding and entry to this program will assist deal with issues they’ve heard from farmers.
Detailed program data and utility kinds shall be obtainable when the consumption opens on April 22, 2021 and can cowl prices retroactive to March 13, 2021. Purposes shall be accepted whereas funding is obtainable or till November 30, 2021. The approval course of has been simplified and shall be expedited to assist assist office well being and security within the agri-food sector.
The announcement is part of Ontario’s 2021 funds plan.