TWEED, Ont. — The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario), announced $250,000 through the Canadian Experiences Fund (CEF) to help three Central-Ontario producers enhance culinary-tourism experiences, expand their product offerings and support local jobs.
The investment is expected to help these growing enterprises recover from the impact of COVID-19 while creating jobs and opportunities in their communities by extending their tourism seasons and attracting more visitors — both to their properties and the wider region.
“Central Ontario is a beautiful and bountiful part of our country and it’s no surprise visitors are drawn by all that it has to offer, including incredible craft beer, cider and wine. With our tourism industry feeling the impact of COVID-19, this important investment from FedDev Ontario will help three local businesses not just survive, but thrive,” says Joly.
Stirling, Ont.-based Kings Mill Cider received $75,000 to expand its operations into shoulder seasons and improve the tourist experience. With this investment, the craft-cider producer has completed a new covered walkway and enclosed deck overlooking the orchard, a renovated kitchen and taproom area, improved road signage and parking and introduced new experiences, including a wood-fueled pizza oven, walking trails and overnight tent camping.
Bath, Ont.’s MacKinnon Brothers Brewing received $75,000 to attract more visitors by enhancing its property and hosting events. It’s building a permanent outdoor timber-frame stage to host music festivals, performances by a local theatre company and other events, which will help draw more tourists during the shoulder season.
Potter Settlement Artisan Winery in Tweed, Ont. received $100,000 to expand its tourist season by improving its buildings and property. It’s added a pizza oven that can serve 50 to 100 customers per day, water features and new tourist amenities.
“Tourism businesses, including artisanal cider, craft beer and wine producers, contribute to the richness of the southern Ontario landscape,” says Kate Young, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Economic Development and Official Languages (FedDev Ontario). “The investments made today through the Canadian Experiences Fund will have a positive impact not only on the businesses themselves, but on the local economies that depend on their unique contributions.”