New Reports and Case Studies Show Impact and Value of our Agri-Food Sector

Friday, March 4, 2022

With support from the Golden Horseshoe Food and Farming Alliance, the Greenbelt Foundation has released two new reports that provide insight into the economic impacts and life histories of Greenbelt Farmers.

The first report, Understanding How Greenbelt Agriculture Feeds the Regional Economy, details agriculture’s economic contribution to the Greenbelt and Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH).

The second report, Greenbelt Farmers: Economic Network Case Studies, focuses on qualitative case studies of seven local Greenbelt farms.

Together, the case studies and economic analysis tell the story of the complexity of the agricultural and agri-food sector in the Greenbelt and Greater Golden Horseshoe, its relationships with other sectors, and the value of agriculture and agri-food businesses to the region’s economy.

Understanding How Greenbelt Agriculture Feeds the Regional Economy

This study, conducted by Summit72, builds on earlier analysis and provides empirical evidence that highlights the importance of agriculture to the region’s overall economic health and supports the continued protection of the Greenbelt.

Key findings from this report:

  • In 2020, the Greenbelt’s agri-food sector generated an estimated $4.1 billion in GDP and close to 59,000 jobs.
  • Within the Greenbelt alone, farm purchases of goods and services were valued at $900 million in 2017, with over 70 per cent of this economic activity taking place hyper-locally within the GGH. This data indicates that Greenbelt farmers are developing business relationships with not only local farm input providers, but also other professional business support services such as accountants, lawyers, and financial institutions.

Greenbelt Farmers: Economic Network Case Studies

This report presents a series of case studies that highlight the economic contributions, diversity, breadth, and interconnected nature of agricultural and agri-food systems in the Greenbelt and the Greater Golden Horseshoe.

These case studies are based on interviews with seven farmers who represent a variety of commodities, different farm types, and sizes of operation across the Greenbelt:

  • Almet Farms (Durham Region)
  • Grimo Nut Nursery (Niagara Region)
  • Eek Farms (York Region)
  • Tomar Farms (Durham Region)
  • Kauzlaric Family Farms (Niagara Region)
  • Ovino Farms (Halton Region)
  • Joe Loewith and Sons Ltd. (City of Hamilton)

We encourage you to read about these impressive farm businesses! To learn more and access both reports, visit the Greenbelt Foundation website here.