While compliance deadlines for the Safe Food for Canadians Act draw near, many food businesses still haven’t implemented a HACCP-based food safety program as required by the Act. The new food safety regulations are part of a big government push – federal and provincial – to modernize the country’s food safety, traceability, and biosecurity assurance systems through Growing Forward 2, a five-year, $3 billion initiative that is now in its final year. So what does this mean for companies looking for help funding food safety improvements?
Growing Forward 2 oversees a series of provincial cost-sharing programs aimed at helping agri-businesses achieve HACCP certification, but that money is running out quickly. High priority areas like Ontario and Alberta are no longer accepting applications to their programs since the funds are now fully allocated. The government has announced that a new agricultural policy framework will be launched in April 2018, but we’ll have to wait and see if a new incarnation of the program will be forthcoming.