Industry Media

OPMA News Releases

  • OPMA Supports Bill C-280 in Partnership with Several other Associations

    In anticipation of Fall Harvest (November 14-16), The OPMA, CPMA, QPMA and other associations in our industry will be sending a joint letter to all MPs this month in support of Bill C-280. Bill C-280 would establish a critical financial protection mechanism for fresh produce sellers in Canada to help secure payment in the case of a buyer bankruptcy, in the form of a deemed trust that would operate similarly to the successful PACA model in the U.S. Creating a deemed trust would not impose any additional cost to government, but would help to ensure that fresh produce sellers can continue to support local economies across the country and to provide Canadians with our safe, nutritious fruit and vegetable products.

  • The Ontario Produce Marketing Association Announces Four New Board Members

    Toronto, ON – June 17, 2022 – The Ontario Produce Marketing Association (OPMA) announces the appointment of four new Board members at its Annual General Meeting (AGM) held on June 15, 2022. The newly elected Directors will serve three-year terms from 2022 to 2025.   The Directors joining the OPMA’s Board are: Michael Miranda from Farm Boy, Ariel Nevado from Metro Inc., Dustin Wellman from Wonderful Sales and Agnes Boutros from Mastronardi Produce Ltd.   Michael Miranda is the Produce Category Manager at Farm Boy. Miranda has extensive committee experience with the OPMA. His most notable contribution has been his leadership in pioneering the OPMA’s Young Professionals Committee as its Chair. He was also awarded the OPMA’s Fresh Award in 2021 for being an up-and-coming leader in the produce industry.   Ariel Nevado is a Senior Buyer of Produce at Metro Inc. Nevado has over 40 years of experience in the produce industry. His vast experience with all aspects of the produce business provides him with unique perspective that will allow him to positively contribute to the OPMA.   Dustin Wellman is a Regional Sales Manager at Wonderful Sales, with over 20 years experience in the produce industry spanning various aspects. He currently sits on the Wonderful Sales Canadian Leadership Team and is actively involved in product design for the Canadian market.   Agnes Boutros is an Account Manager at Mastronardi Produce Ltd, with over 8 years experience in the produce industry. She will be an asset to the OPMA Board in the areas of marketing, industry influence, strategy development, and management.   The four Directors retiring from the Board are: Michael Borcsok from Greenhouse Juice; Rebecca Compton from Aparagus Farmers of Ontario; Shreenivas Shellikeri from Nature Fresh Farms; and Houman Mandani from Metro Ontario Inc.   At the meeting, Todd Patterson, the OPMA Chair, congratulated the new Board members and thanked the retiring Directors for their years of service to the association and to the industry.   “Over the next year, the OPMA will be developing our 2023 – 2025 strategic plan. Government relations will be high on the Board’s list of priorities,” said Patterson. -30- About Ontario Produce Marketing Association: The Ontario Produce Marketing Association is a member-funded, not-for-profit organization whose primary objective is to connect people and information from field to plate.   For more information contact: Rochelle Roye Marketing and Communications Manager

  • New Retail Market Annual Report Shows Produce Sales Grew in 2021

    Toronto, ON – March 10, 2022 – The new Retail Market Annual Report produced by the Ontario Produce Marketing Association (OPMA) shows that melons, cut fruit, and specialty fruit such as kiwifruit, persimmon and pomegranate were key drivers of year-over-year sales growth in Ontario retail produce departments in 2021.   “We have seen produce sales increase due to a continued pandemic-related shift away from in-person dining venues that began in 2020. Produce suppliers and retailers continue to adapt and meet the changing needs of Ontario consumers,” said Stephen Reid, OPMA President.   According to the report, fruit outpaced vegetables in sales and tonnage growth, as well as inflation. The fruit market experienced a 2.3% growth year-over-year with stable tonnage at 0.2% – the largest tonnage gain being from stone fruit at 9%. Total inflation for fruit increased by 2.1%, with increases in most categories.   The vegetable market experienced negative growth in sales and tonnage. Total sales growth and tonnage declined by 0.3% and 1.4% respectively, while total inflation on the price per kg for vegetables increased by 1.4%, driven primarily by root vegetables, cooking greens, and field vegetables.   Organic produce outpaced conventional produce on sales growth with organic fruit sales increasing by 3.7% compared to conventional fruit at 2.2%. While organic vegetables sales increased by 4.7%, conventional vegetables declined by 0.6%.   The report identifies many opportunities for both suppliers and retailers. Suppliers can benefi­t from growth in emerging categories like specialty fruit and international vegetables as a means towards filling supply gaps. There are also opportunities for retailers to begin or expand organic choices for consumers in core categories such as berries, bananas, mushrooms and root vegetables.   Mike Mauti, Managing Partner of Execulytics Consulting, noted: “Extraordinary events continue to shape consumer demand in unpredictable ways. Only by closely researching the market could produce professionals across the supply chain have discovered the re-emergence of cut fruit as a growth category or that mushrooms are moving closer towards becoming an organic only category. The market research continues to identify key growth areas for produce suppliers and retailers as the province navigates through supply challenges.” This report is based on NielsenIQ MarketTrack data for fresh produce sold in Ontario grocery banner, mass merchandiser and drug channels for 52 weeks ending October 9th, 2021. Additional analysis was conducted by Execulytics Consulting. Access to the full report is available to OPMA members on the OPMA’s website.   -30-   About the Ontario Produce Marketing Association: The Ontario Produce Marketing Association is a member funded, not for profit organization whose mission is to connect people and information from field to plate.   For more information contact: Rochelle Roye Marketing and Communications Manager, OPMA        

Latest Industry News

  • Ontario Expanding Broadband Access in Rural Communities

    The governments of Canada and Ontario have completed construction on a significant broadband infrastructure project. This will give several hundred families, farms and businesses in Dufferin county access to fast and reliable high-speed internet service. Read the full news release here.

  • CFIA 2022 temporary SFC licence conditions for importing lettuce

    From September 28 to December 22, 2022, importers of romaine lettuce and products containing romaine lettuce will be required to comply with temporary Safe Food for Canadians (SFC) licence conditions. During this period, the CFIA will require importers to submit attestation forms and Certificates of Analysis to confirm that the romaine lettuce does not contain detectable levels of E. coli O157:H7 if the lettuce was grown in the Salinas Valley. A Proof of Origin will be required for U.S. romaine lettuce products that are from areas outside of the Salinas Valley.

  • CanadaGAP seeks Applicants for Technical Advisory Committee

    CanadaGAP is accepting nominations for candidates to serve on the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC). The committee composition focuses on bringing together individuals with food safety knowledge and expertise. The function of the committee is to provide technical advice on potential changes impacting the food safety requirements of the CanadaGAP Program. The TAC is comprised of a Chair and between 6 and 9 members who are appointed by the CanAgPlus Board of Directors by December 31 each year. Members will serve terms of one or two years, as determined by the Board of Directors. Visit the CanadaGAP website for more information and to apply.

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Market Research

Ontario contributes over one third of Canada’s total fruit and vegetable production, contributing more than $4.2 billion and over 66,000 jobs to the economy. Approximately 43% of this value is field grown and 57% produced in greenhouse operations….Continue Reading

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