The arrival of winter weather Monday did not deter guests from attending the funding announcement made by Ontario Minister of Agriculture Hon. Jeff Leal, at the Elgin Innovation Centre (EIC) in Aylmer, Ontario.
Greg Currie and Dave Mennill, Mayors of Aylmer and Malahide respectively, warmly welcomed the crowd and introduced the Minister who enthusiastically announced the Ontario government’s investment in Planet Shrimp of up to $237,216 through the Local Food Fund. 20 other local food projects in Ontario will also be supported by the program.
“I would like to congratulate Planet Shrimp, as well as the southwestern and central Local Food Fund recipients, on their hard work and dedication to producing quality local food and strengthening Ontario’s agri-food industry.” (Ministry of Agriculture)
Marvyn Budd, President of Planet Shrimp, shared their vision to produce high quality, organic shrimp that will be a sustainable, healthy, and ecologically-friendly food source for local Canadians and export markets. The innovative new process will mean that the rising demand for shrimp in Canada could be met by a local product harvested a matter of hours or days before landing on the dinner plate, never frozen, and free from the many harmful chemicals found in imported shrimp.
During his presentation, Budd praised Jack Baribeau and the management team of the Elgin Innovation Centre for their support, collaboration and creativity in making the project happen.
The Elgin Innovation Centre was able to accommodate Planet Shrimp’s multi-phase build-out of the shrimp farm, beginning with the 65,000 sq. ft. area that housed the event. When all construction phases are complete, the bio-secure farm will span 250,000 sq. ft., and will likely be the largest indoor closed-circuit shrimp farm in the world.
The Elgin Innovation Centre team is excited for Planet Shrimp, and grateful for their business as it contributes to the vision of returning the old tobacco processing property into a source of meaningful employment and economic diversity in Elgin County.