Ontario farmers are seizing agritourism opportunities from breweries and corn mazes to pick-your-own Christmas tree farms and sugar bushes. OFA was proud to partner with the Ontario Chamber of Commerce and Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) on the 2022 State of the Ontario Tourism Industry Report. The Report provides several recommendations for all three levels of government, covering topics such as the economy, labour, infrastructure, and the future of tourism.
OFA appreciates the call to remove red tape and financial burden, to promote career opportunities and improve recruitment and retainment strategies, to improve transportation infrastructure, to improve high-speed broadband internet access, and seize sector-specific opportunities, such as agritourism.
Agritourism is a form of nature-based tourism that allows visitors to learn about, explore, and taste Ontario’s vast agricultural offerings. Agritourism is an industry ripe for growth and economic opportunity. By enabling farm businesses to expand their business offerings and enhance their revenue streams, local and provincial governments stimulate the economy while providing the public with an opportunity to experience local, healthy food and reconnect with the natural environment.
OFA supports the recommendation to promote Ontario as a prime destination for agritourism and other forms of nature-based tourism. OFA also supports the recommendation that government programs and initiatives for agritourism should consider the time restraints and seasonal pressures associated with agriculture by timing funding application deadlines appropriately.
Read the full report here.