Good Things Grow In Ontario



    Campaign Gives New Life To An Old Favourite, Encourages Consumers To Pick
    Ontario Freshness

    QUEEN'S PARK, June 21 /CNW/ - Good things grow in Ontario - that's the
message Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Leona Dombrowsky wants
people to remember the next time they go grocery shopping.
    "Ontario's food producers grow, raise and produce high quality food
products that are among the best in the world," said Dombrowsky at a
celebration showcasing a variety of high-quality Ontario foods on the lawn of
Queen's Park. "I encourage all Ontarians, when grocery shopping or dining, to
Pick Ontario Freshness."
    New television commercials, featuring the return of the "good things grow
in Ontario" jingle, start running today on major networks across Ontario. The
ads are part of the $12.5 million 'Pick Ontario Freshness' strategy to support
local promotions and commodity-specific programs by building interest in all
Ontario foods and raising general consumer awareness and demand for Ontario
foods in stores and in restaurants. Of the total, $2.5 million has already
been distributed to several agri-food industry associations to assist them in
promoting the sale of Ontario products.
    "The McGuinty government understands that everyone has a role to play,"
said Dombrowsky. "If we buy Ontario, everyone wins, because we are supporting
our farmers, and processors, our rural economy, our environment and ourselves
with healthy food from here at home."
    "Ontario's fresh food products - along with our world-famous wines and
craft beers - make the province a mecca for visitors who enjoy fine dining,"
said Tourism Minister Jim Bradley. "I invite everyone to delight their senses
and savour the extraordinary tastes of Ontario this summer."

    Disponible en français

    
                            www.ontario.ca/omafra
                       http://www.foodland.gov.on.ca/


    Backgrounder
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                 'PICK ONTARIO FRESHNESS' MARKETING STRATEGY

    -   A $10 million investment in a strategy to raise consumer awareness
        and promote the consumption of Ontario-grown and processed foods was
        announced in the 2007 Ontario Budget.
    -   $2.5 million has also been provided to nine industry associations,
        including: $400,000 to Homegrown Ontario, a marketing program
        developed by Ontario's lamb, veal and pork producers to help identify
        and promote Ontario red meats and $500,000 to the President's
        Council, an umbrella group of 27 farm and commodity organizations, to
        promote Ontario farming and food products to consumers.
    -   The provincial government currently runs Foodland Ontario, an ongoing
        consumer branding and marketing program that promotes Ontario grown
        fresh fruits and vegetables in partnership with retail locations
        throughout the province. The program is celebrating its 30th year of
        operation in 2007.
    -   There are also some region-specific branding and marketing efforts of
        Ontario food (e.g. Savour Muskoka, Harvestin' the County (Prince
        Edward County).
    -   The 'Pick Ontario Freshness' strategy consists of:
        -  An expansion of the current Foodland Ontario program to include
           deli, fresh meats, dairy, baked goods, as well as fruits and
           vegetables, so that all fresh foods at retail are promoted.
        -  A foodservice component in fine and vacation dining establishments
           presented in conjunction with the Ministry of Tourism and the
           Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corporation. In particular,
           this element will complement the Culinary Tourism Strategy used by
           these organizations.
        -  The $2.5 million for agri-food industry stakeholders.

    Foodland Ontario - 30th anniversary

    -   Foodland Ontario continues to be a successful marketing program for
        Ontario grown fruits and vegetables.
    -   Each year, more than 1,200 grocery stores across the province are
        contacted by staff to promote Ontario fresh produce under the
        program.
    -   Several commodity organizations support the program as well,
        including the Ontario Asparagus Growers' Marketing Board, Ontario
        Fruit and Vegetable Growers' Association, Ontario Greenhouse
        Vegetable Growers, Mushrooms Canada, Ontario Tender Fruit Producers'
        Marketing Board, Ontario Potato Marketing Board, Ontario Apple
        Growers, and the Fresh Vegetable Growers of Ontario.
    -   The program has three main elements: Retail Merchandising, Brand
        Advertising and Public Relations and Grower Relations.
    -   Foodland advertises on television, radio and billboards at the
        Ontario Food Terminal.
    -   An average of 40 pieces of promotional signage are posted in each of
        more than 1,200 stores, and 300 farmers' markets across the province.
    -   In 2006, 95 per cent of principal grocery shoppers recognized the
        Foodland Ontario symbol (up from 86 per cent in 2005) and 87 per cent
        of principal grocery shoppers demonstrated a propensity to purchase
        Ontario produce (up from 78 per cent in 2005). These achievements
        represent the strongest results in the 30 year history of the
        program.

    Disponible en français

                            www.ontario.ca/omafra
                       http://www.foodland.gov.on.ca/
    





For further information:

For further information: Kelly Synnott, Minister's Office, (416)
326-6439; Brent Ross, Communications Branch, (416) 326-9342

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Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

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