GHFFA releases new Action Plan 2021 – 2026: A Vibrant Future

Monday, November 9, 2020

The Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance releases new 5-year Action Plan

From our Chair, Johanna Downey:

“2020 has underlined the importance of the food sector around the world. Food companies along the value chain pivoted and their many challenges became opportunities, while the agricultural community remained steadfast in their commitment to growing.

Embarking on a plan that will guide the Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance on a path of capacity building and sector support for all areas of the food value chain is no small feat. We are thankful for the continued partnership of the regions and cities that comprise the Greater Golden Horseshoe, the members around the table that offer ground level experience, and the Wilton Group for developing a plan as robust as the Golden Horseshoe itself.

It is with great enthusiasm and a strong focus on sector strength that the Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance undertake this work plan and move forward on a path to a resilient and vibrant future.”

This Action Plan is broken down into 3 goals to achieve the vision of the organization:

  1. The GHFFA is recognized as the leading organization with expertise on food and farming issues and opportunities in the Golden Horseshoe Region of Ontario
  2. Establish the Golden Horseshoe as Canada’s leading innovative agriculture and agri-food cluster
  3. Enable the agri-food cluster to support sustainability outcomes

The Executive Summary

Ontario’s Golden Horseshoe lies on the western edge of Lake Ontario and contains a diverse mix of landscapes, people, institutions, and industries. Similar to Foodvalley in the Netherlands, the food and farming cluster in the Golden Horseshoe presents unique opportunities for innovative development and forward-thinking policies.

The Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance (the “Alliance”) has proven itself to be a valuable partnership among municipalities, agricultural groups, educational institutions, and provincial ministries to co-ordinate efforts within this vibrant region. In 2012, The Alliance produced an Action Plan to set goals and guide activities over a 10-year planning horizon.

This new Action Plan provides an update to the previous Plan based on economic and societal changes that have arisen since 2012, in order to guide the Alliance over the next 5 years. These changes include advancements in technology (such as automation and artificial intelligence), the impacts of climate change, the changing policy context, as well as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the agri-food system.

This Action Plan aims to build on past successes while taking into consideration emerging trends and opportunities to plan for a prosperous future for the agri-food sector within the Golden Horseshoe region.

Through research and engagement, including interviews, a survey, an environmental scan, and a virtual Summit, this Action Plan identifies 3 broad goals for the Alliance over the next 5 years. To help achieve each of these goals, this Action Plan identifies a series of objectives with 39 practical and measurable actions. The Action Plan also includes a roadmap for each goal to demonstrate how each action contributes to broader progress.

View the full GHFFA Action Plan 2021 – 2026: A Vibrant Future here.
Access a condensed summary version of this Action Plan here.