Food and Beverage Ontario (FBO) has launched a new career awareness program called Taste Your Future, focused on drawing attention to the abundance of jobs available within Ontario’s food and beverage processing sector.
“I congratulate the industry on the launch of Taste Your Future and look forward to more Ontarians embarking on careers within the agri-food and beverage processing sector,” says Jeff Leal, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “Ontario is the ideal place for the industry to grow and thrive, with a robust population, colleges and universities training the future workforce, access to local and export markets and an entrepreneurial culture.”
Research conducted by FBO shows that while awareness of the opportunities in the industry is low, Ontarians have an appetite to learn more. According to an FBO media release, the Taste Your Future multi-year campaign shares stories, videos and more outlining education and job opportunities to help people learn about the industry and find their place within it. There is also a 10-question quiz to help people match interests with career opportunities, and all of this can be found at TasteYourFuture.ca
“Canada’s food and beverage processors drive our economy, connecting producers to consumers and touching the lives of all Canadians,” says Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food. “The Government of Canada is pleased to support the food sector in a way that allows it to be a leader in job creation and innovation.”
Two thirds of employers surveyed by FBO indicated difficulty finding qualified candidates, according to the media release. Employers are looking for candidates trained in food safety, business, agriculture, food science, as well as skilled trades and technology.
“We’re looking forward to sharing information about the post-secondary opportunities in the food and beverage processing sector with parents and students trying to figure out what they want to study,” says Linda Franklin, president of Colleges Ontario and a member of the committee working with FBO to develop and execute the Taste Your Future program. “Through this campaign, we’re also working with employers to better identify the specific roles they are trying to fill so we can profile them on tasteyourfuture.ca and find the students and future employees that are right for them.”
Taste Your Future is supported by Growing Forward 2, a federal-provincial-territorial initiative.