Middlesex County is home to many food producers, food processors and agricultural technology firms. Many of these businesses prioritize innovation, allowing them to enhance their sustainability with the goal of ensuring the region continues to be the heartland of agricultural production in Ontario for generations to come. Overall, Ontario’s agri-food sector is the province’s number one employer, generating $9.91 billion in exports annually. Agri-business represents more than a quarter of all enterprises in Middlesex County with a total of $552 million worth of goods produced each year. Nowadays, agri-business, just like other sectors of the economy, is rapidly evolving with the influence of technology, all the way from the equipment used on the farm, to the way food is processed. Middlesex County’s farmers are adopting technologies faster than provincial or Canadian averages, and this spirit of innovation, combined with some of the most fertile farmland in Canada, makes the County a prime location to establish or invest in an agricultural technology business operation. . Middlesex County’s 2,352 farms are comprised of 246,592 hectares of farmland and in addition to crops, include an abundant and prosperous variety of cattle, pork, poultry and egg operations.
Having the raw materials close at hand allows innovative food processors such as Bonduelle to contract land for the production of produce, for its frozen vegetable processing facility in Strathroy. Having access to land also allows companies involved in research and development like Dow AgroSciences to test new plant varieties and other crop management programs. Middlesex’s agricultural technology-based businesses enjoy easy access to larger markets through well-maintained transportation infrastructure. Products grown or processed in Middlesex County are within easy shipping distance of Toronto, or the U.S. market via border crossings at Windsor, Sarnia or Buffalo, thanks to both Highways 401,402 and ancillary routes. Additionally, the skilled labour force, proximity to post-secondary institutions and the network of food processors, equipment manufacturers and dealers and agricultural service providers in the County combine forces to create a constantly innovating ecosystem where agri-food and agricultural technology businesses can grow and thrive.
Reasons to invest in Middlesex
- Skilled workforce
- Strong rural work ethic
- Early adopters of on-farm technology
- Access to American markets
- Excellent transportation
- Established network of Producers, Processors, Equipment Manufacturers, Dealers and Service Providers.