To mark World Hunger Day, the Ontario government issued a statement reminding farmers about a key part of Ontario’s Local Food Act, 2013 that supports Ontario farmers with a tax credit for donating healthy and nutritious food to their local food banks. This tax credit was added to the Local Food Act by an amendment put forward by MPP Bob Bailey in 2013.
“I want to thank Bob Bailey for adding the farmers’ tax credit to the Local Food Act back in 2013,” said Ernie Hardeman, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “This tax credit has been great for our farmers, great for our community food banks and great for our other food providers that benefit from these donations.”
The first of its kind in Canada, the Community Food Program Donation Tax Credit for Farmers gives farmers a tax credit valued at 25 per cent of the fair market value of the agricultural products they donate. Community food programs like food banks also benefit by receiving more donations of fresh local food for distribution to families across Ontario.
“Everyone should have the opportunity to enjoy fresh and nutritious food,” said MPP Bailey. “I introduced the farmers’ tax credit as a way to broaden access to healthy local food for families and individuals who need it most.”
Eligible farmers can donate fruits, vegetables, meat, eggs or dairy products, fish, grains, pulses, herbs, honey, maple syrup, mushrooms, nuts, or anything else that is grown, raised or harvested on a farm in Ontario.
The tax credit and Local Food Act, 2013 are part of Ontario’s broader local food approach to promote the good things that are grown and harvested across the province. Buying local food supports farmers, protects the environment, strengthens local food systems and the province’s economy.