A workshop last month in Brampton, Ontario aimed to connect new Canadians to job opportunities in the food and beverage processing sector—an industry that is seeking to create 60,000 new jobs by 2020.
In partnership with the City of Brampton’s Economic Development office, the event came as part of the Taste Your Future career awareness program led by Food and Beverage Ontario (FBO).
The workshop brought together organizations providing employment services to new Canadians with food & beverage (F&B) processors, where they explored pertinent topics, such as: perceptions of the F&B industry among newcomers, F&B companies that are currently recruiting, challenges newcomers face accessing these positions and challenges employers face in recruiting, and ways to encourage newcomers to consider employment opportunities in the F&B industry.
A panel discussion focused on strategies for recruiting newcomers and overcoming barriers to recruitment. Barriers can include knowing where to even access information about the opportunities, or acquiring the proper training, language and certification.
So addressing these barriers is an important and necessary step; because for those seeking jobs, food and beverage processing has ample opportunity.
“Food and beverage processors provide numerous job and career opportunities for new Canadians across the province,” says Norm Beal, CEO of Food and Beverage Ontario. “Too many of these companies struggle to fill job openings with skilled employees. We want to ensure all job seekers, including new Canadians, know about these opportunities and think of food and beverage processing when looking for a place to work.”
In Brampton alone, where the food and beverage industry is growing, there’s more than 9,000 employed in the sector by over 150 different companies.
Bridging a connection between these employers and new Canadians is undoubtedly a worthwhile and valuable endeavour.
For more on this workshop, check out the Post-Workshop Report from FBO, which includes key findings from the worksop, recommendations and next steps.