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Ontario invites agtech innovators to submit cutting edge projects


August 20, 2021
By Greenhouse Canada

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Ontario has announced the second phase of the Agri-Tech Innovation Program to help drive innovations in new technology.

Known as ‘The Innovator Stream,’ this phase focuses on ground-breaking projects where innovation — such as piloting the use of autonomous farm equipment in an operational environment — is new to Ontario, North America or the agri-sector. Examples of pilot projects include robotics and artificial intelligence, to help the industry address pandemic related challenges, ongoing labour shortages, and create new opportunities for growth across the sector.

Funding eligibility will include targeted, specialized, high-impact projects that pilot or demonstrate cutting-edge technology. Projects will require collaboration between at least two agri-food businesses, organizations and agri-food technology providers or developers.

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Applicants may apply for up to 60% of eligible costs, to a maximum of $750,000. The Innovators Stream intake will run from August 19 to September 27, 2021. Application instructions available here.

“Investing in new technology will have tremendous potential to help our agri-food industry meet many of the current challenges it faces,” said Lisa Thompson, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “I’m calling on agri-food businesses, commodity organizations and technology providers to join this exciting new initiative and help protect the safety of agri-food workers, while ensuring Ontario’s agri-food sector continues to lead across North American and around the world.”

The Innovator Stream is the targeted second phase of the Agri-tech Innovation Program, a $22 million program launched in April to provide up to 60 per cent funding for eligible costs, to a maximum of $750,000, to develop larger-scale collaboration projects aimed at enhancing the health and safety of workers and increasing productivity. The first phase for early adopters was announced in April, to foster adoption of technology.

Source: Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs