Upcoming Webinars: Surviving Covid-19, Workplace Inspections and WSIB.

A farmworker, considered an essential worker under the current COVID-19 pandemic guidelines, wears a mask as he works at a flower farm Wednesday, April 15, 2020, in Santa Paula, Calif. (April 2020)

Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like Covid-19 is going anywhere in Spring 2021.

Given that it’s the upcoming busy season for floriculture operations and workers, here’s a look at some upcoming webinars related to Covid safety, worker compensation, and surviving as a business during Covid.

So keep your calendars open on Feb 2nd, 3rd, 10th and 17th! More information on these webinars and registration can be found below.

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Apply for Covid-19 Funding: Application Webinar on Feb 2nd.

Enhaced Worker Protection ProgramHave you applied for OMAFRA’s Enhanced Agri-Food Workplace Protection Program (EAWPP), to help mitigate risks and costs from COVID??? If not, there’s still time!

Funding continues to be available until February 26th, 2021 on a first come, first serve basis. Funding up to $15,000 per farm is available for preventative health and safety measures.  Up to $100,000  is available per property for on-farm worker safety improvement programs.

Links to expenses covered under the EAWPP program are included in the post below. Additionally, OMAFRA is running a webinar on Feb 2nd, 2021 to help growers navigate applying for the different program categories. Keep reading for details. Continue reading “Apply for Covid-19 Funding: Application Webinar on Feb 2nd.”

Controlled Environment Technology Webinar Series – One to Watch!

The OMAFRA Greenhouse Vegetable Specialist is putting together an exciting webinar series on technology in controlled environments!

This series is relevant to anyone producing in controlled environments – from vegetables, to herbs, cannabis and flowers. The first webinar tackles Artificial Intelligence in these systems. Industry experts from Koidra and Blue Radix — two companies working with Ontario producers — cover integrating AI into production to improve automation, yield and reduce errors. This webinar covers each company’s approach to agricultural AI and provides answers to producer questions.

Details on the first installment of this webinar series can be found below.

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Surface Water Quality Management Webinar for Growers – Jan 26

Reposted from ONnurserycrops

Dealing appropriately with water issues is arguably one of the most important concerns facing today’s horticultural sector. There are numerous regulations at municipal, provincial and federal levels that govern access to water as well as the implications associated with run-off water.

Growers have responded by constructing elaborate pond and water recycling systems but are now challenged to maintain the quality of water in their pond systems to keep their modern irrigation systems operable.

In this webinar Dr. Jeanine West will share water quality management strategies based on her expertise and preliminary research findings. Time will be allocated for Q&A. Keep reading for registration information.

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OAFRI Funding Available for Research Projects – Closes Jan 6!

Do you have staff on hand that can conduct high-quality research? Have a project idea that can improve plant health in the floriculture industry? Then you might be eligible for research funds.

Keep reading to see the specific types of projects that are eligible for funding.

Continue reading “OAFRI Funding Available for Research Projects – Closes Jan 6!”

Questions About Pesticide Resistance? OMAFRA Lunch and Learn Series has Answers.

Spider mite - Wikipedia

Pesticide resistance is something most growers have run into at some time or another. High pesticide resistance in species like western flower thrips and Bemisia whitefly is something we’ve learned to work around. But how can we avoid resistance in pest species where we still rely on pesticides? For pests like spider mites and powdery mildew, this is an ongoing battle.

Three OMAFRA specialists are hosting a series on pesticide resistance that will include question and answer periods after each session. Contributors are Hannah Fraser (Entomologist), Dr. Katie Goldenhar (Plant Pathologist) and Kristen Obeid (Weed Management). Read on for dates and how to register.

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Diversifying your Greenhouse Crops with Hothouse Strawberries

Fresh, delicious, hothouse strawberries in the dead of winter…can’t you just taste them?  We would ALL love to see more local strawberries in our grocery stores, wouldn’t we?

Perhaps you’ve thought about growing strawberries in your greenhouse.  Or you’ve dabbled in production already.  Maybe you are a well-seasoned strawberry grower but eager to stay connected and continue learning.

If any of these sounds like you, you’ll want to check out an upcoming course on hydroponic strawberry production by Hort Americas.

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Preventing Issues in Your Spring Crops: Sanitation, Dips and Bio Tips.

P1010595With the holiday season almost upon us, it’s time to turn our attention to Spring bedding crops. Although here for a brief window, the diversity of these crops means you’re bound to encounter some sort of disease and insect problems.

One way you can head off issues is to plan and prepare now.  This post from January 2020 has important tips on sanitation for common spring crop diseases, dips and early sprays to prevent key pests, as well as tips on where to spend your biocontrol dollars.

Continue reading “Preventing Issues in Your Spring Crops: Sanitation, Dips and Bio Tips.”

Agri-Food Workplace Protection Program: Additional Funding

Enhaced Worker Protection ProgramOn May 14, 2020 the ministry announced the launch of the Agri-Food Workplace Protection Program for Producers.   The government has recently announced an additional $11.6 M in funding.

Many in the greenhouse made pro-active improvements to workplace safety in light of Covid-19, which is why the program accepts applications for changes made as far back as March 15, 2020.

The program has also been simplified to provide faster assistance by eliminating pre-approval. Growers can now submit eligible expenses up to the farm maximum ($7500). 

The program includes accommodation and/or transport costs related to outbreak prevention, as well as workplace modifications and purchases of personal protective equipment. More program details can be found below and on the OMAFRA website. Continue reading “Agri-Food Workplace Protection Program: Additional Funding”

“Place to Grow” – Funding Available for Agricultural Innovation

As part of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership (CAP), a funding stream has been launched to promote collaboration between agricultural and value-chain partners. Creating partnerships accelerates the creation and adoption of innovation for our industry.

For more information on this program, including types of projects that are eligible, and next week’s public webinar on the program, read on!

Continue reading ““Place to Grow” – Funding Available for Agricultural Innovation”