Chong announces federal grants for local co-operatives

Wellington Halton Hills MP Michael Chong announced two grants for area farmers recently.

He announced that the federal government is support­ing biodiesel production with $21,430 in funding to the Everpure Biodiesel Co-opera­tive. That project, funded under the government’s Co-operative Development Initiative (CDI), and will begin development of an extensive waste oil collec­tion system to be used in bio­diesel production.

Chong also announced sup­port for organic food produc­tion with $35,000 in funding to the Ontario Federation of Local Organic Food Co-ops. That project, funded under the CDI, will examine if economies of scale can assist organic grow­ers using the co-op model.

“The government of Canada is working with the co-op sector to help develop local solutions to the challenges faced by Canadians,” said Chong. “For 100 years, co-ops have contributed greatly to local economic development in Canada.” 

The Everpure Biodiesel Co-operative, located in Erin, will develop a network for the col­lection of materials to be used in biodiesel production. A busi­ness model will be developed with a goal to attract 70 mem­bers.

Used oil will be converted for the co-op by a local manufacturing plant and the biodiesel will be sold back to co-op members. The plan is to make the oil collection network self-sufficient once the project is complete.

 The Ontario Federation of Local Organic Food Co-ops in Guelph, will work towards defining a business model as well as developing its business plan and financial structure. A federation of local food co-ops will be developed to benefit farmers by giving them a larger market and consumers by offering quality local products in larger quantities.