Exploring Value-Added Opportunities Course

Ever wondered about turning your fruit into jam?  Ever dreamed about making gourmet ready-to-eat meals with your produce?

Take the free Exploring Value Added Opportunities course, offered by the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA), to learn whether adding value to your products and services is right for your business.

Course Description

Participants will learn how to generate ideas for value-added opportunities, assess an idea’s business potential, identify and manage risk and develop a plan to execute their idea.

Course Dates and Times

The course is being delivered through three, one-hour interactive webinars.  These sessions are taking place on February 24, March 3, and March 10 (all Tuesdays) from 12-1pm.  To participate in this free learning opportunity, you will need Internet and phone access.  Pre-registration is also required.

Course Testimonial

“Sessions were dynamic and engaging. We were also very impressed with the sheer quantity of good information offered to us. Thank you!” A past course participant.

Learn more or register at:
ontario.ca/e996
1-877-424-1300

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New MSU Hops Cost of Production Bulletin

P1130375
Ontario hop growers may be interested in a new Hops Cost of Production bulletin developed by Michigan State University Extension. Hop production in Michigan, as in other states and provinces surrounding the Great Lakes, has increased in recent years to meet demand for locally produced ingredients.  This resource can serve as a guide when determining costs for implementing a small scale hop yard and estimating operating costs and returns over the first 5 years of production.

You can download the free bulletin in PDF format at the following link: http://hops.msu.edu/uploads/files/MI_Hops_cost_of_production_Bulletin-E3236.pdf

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Here’s the Dirt on Two Upcoming Soils Conferences.

What do we need to do to enhance our soil health to be resilient to climate change and optimize the yield potential of newly available genetics? If you want to have a better handle on this, join us for SoilSmart 2015.

The FarmSmart Ag Conference is once again offering a full day, in-depth workshop lead by Ray Archuleta of USDA-NRCS, Greensboro NC.  Ray, better known internationally as “The Soil Guy”, will spend the entire day with us, along with US and Ontario farmers who have been profitably putting soil health strategies into action. Through lecture, demonstration, workshops, farmer panels and open Q&A sessions, we are going to get to the heart of what it takes to understand soil and soil health enhancing practices.  SoilSmart will be held at the Manulife Sportsplex at RIM Park in Waterloo at 2100 University Ave. E. on Friday, January 23, 2015.

For more information on SoilSmart 2015, click here or check out the following: SoilSmart 2015

In addition, the next FarmSmart conference will be held on January 24, 2015 at Rozanski Hall on the University of Guelph campus.  The FarmSmart organization started in 1998 as a conference only event geared to help educate farmers on new topics that might assist them to develop their farming operations.  Our FarmSmart philosophy is to attract all producers, whether the farm’s focus and interest is on cropping and nutrient management or livestock production.   As with past conferences, attendees will be exposed to informative discussions on field crops, soils, livestock, environment, energy, business, general interest and more.

For more information on FarmSmart 2015, click here.

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Farm & Food Care Ontario Pesticide Survey, 2014

OPSA reminder for Ontario farmers that the deadline for filling in the Farm & Food Care Ontario Pesticide Survey is February 13, 2015.

This information is very useful for:

  • understanding trends in pesticide use,
  • identifying potential needs of farmers and,
  • identifying research needs.

All Ontario farmers who grew any conventional or organic crops in 2014 can fill out the anonymous survey at: www.ontariopesticidesurvey.ca

Thank you for your cooperation. Farm & Food Care will also accept mail-in, fax or email returns of the survey.

For more information contact:
Bruce Kelly, Environmental Program Lead
Farm & Food Care Ontario
bruce@farmfoodcare.org or (519)837-1326

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Learn About Ontario’s New Raw Leaf Tobacco Registration and Reporting Requirements

From the Ontario Ministry of Finance:

Learn About Ontario’s New Raw Leaf Tobacco Registration and Reporting Requirements

  • How do I register?
  • How do the rules apply to me?
  • What will I have to report and when?
  • What can I expect during an inspection?

Anyone who produces, processes, sells, buys, imports, exports or transports any varieties of raw leaf tobacco will be required to hold a raw leaf tobacco registration certificate effective January 1, 2015. Once registered, you will be required to complete reports regarding your raw leaf tobacco activity.

To assist those impacted by the new regulation, the ministry is hosting an education session (approximately 2 hours) in the following communities to review registration and reporting requirements:

Location: Delhi at Delhi District Hungarian Hall, 71 King Street on December 16, 2014 at 1:30 pm

Location: Blenheim at Golden Acres Curling Club, 430 Catherine Street on December 17, 2014 at 1:30 pm

Location: Aylmer at Saxonia Hall (German Canadian Club), 522 Talbot Street on December 18, 2014 at 9:30 am

Learn More

Call the Ministry of Finance at 1 866 ONT‑TAXS (1 866 668‑8297) ext 16160 to request information on the registration and reporting process.

The raw leaf tobacco regulation, setting out criteria for a registration certificate and exemptions to the regulation, is available on the Ontario’s e‑Laws website.

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Ontario Hop Priority Setting Workshops: Nov 29 and Dec 3, 2014

P1130375Reminder – Ontario hop growers and hop service personnel are invited to participate in one of two hop research and service priority setting workshops.

The sessions will focus on brainstorming research and service priorities to provide direction on future activities related to the development of the Ontario hop industry.

The workshops will be held via conference call and WebEx.

Please RSVP to the Agricultural Information Contact Centre (AICC) ( Tel: 1.877.424.1300 or by email: ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca) for one of the two dates listed below:

Saturday, November 29, 9am-11am

OR

Wednesday, December 3, 7pm-9pm

Upon registration, you will receive two documents to assist with the meetings: a) outline of priority setting process and example of a priority document; and b) a research and service priority form to get you thinking about the issues that matter the most to you.

Please complete the Research and Service Priority Form and return to Evan Elford (evan.elford@ontario.ca) prior to your scheduled workshop.

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Calling All Hop Growers for Priority Setting Workshops

Growing_Hops_Ontario_Logo_5 with shadingAll Ontario hop growers are invited to participate in one of two hop research and service priority setting workshops.

The sessions will focus on brainstorming research and service priorities to provide direction on future activities related to the development of the Ontario hop industry.

The workshops will be held via conference call and WebEx.

Please RSVP to the Agricultural Information Contact Centre (AICC) ( Tel: 1.877.424.1300 or by email: ag.info.omafra@ontario.ca) for one of the two dates listed below:

Saturday, November 29, 9am-11am

OR

Wednesday, December 3, 7pm-9pm

Upon registration, you will receive two documents to assist with the meetings: a) outline of priority setting process and example of a priority document; and b) a research and service priority form to get you thinking about the issues that matter the most to you.

Please complete the Research and Service Priority Form and return to Evan Elford (evan.elford@ontario.ca) prior to your scheduled workshop.

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