The Manitoba government is providing $742,100 for a two-year campaign to raise the profile of Manitoba products for consumers, Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives Minister Stan Struthers announced Oct. 18.
“Locally produced foods are a fresh choice for our consumers and buying locally supports Manitoba producers and processors,” said Struthers. “Manitoba shoppers surveyed have told us they would prefer to purchase Manitoba products and we are pleased to work with the Manitoba Food Processors Association to help make Manitoba products easier to identify.”
The Buy Mani toba Program is part of a five-year program to develop a branding and public-awareness campaign that will help consumers identify and buy locally. This program is industry led and guided by an expert steering committee that includes members of all steps of the food value chain including retail and food service partners.
“The Manitoba Food Processors Association is eager to begin work with the partner organizations on this strategic initiative,” said Dave Shambrock, executive director of the association.
“Each dollar invested by the province will be matched by industry in unique campaigns that will bring more Manitoba-made foods to consumers today, and lasting economic benefits to our communities.”
“KAP is extremely pleased with today’s announcement as it is key to showcase Manitoba products,” said Keystone Agricultural Producers vice-president Doug Chorney. “We look forward to being a part of this initiative and hope that it increases consumption of our products grown here at home.”
A Buy Manitoba food survey with 800 primary grocery shoppers collected information on household purchasing habits and perceptions about buying Manitoba food. The results indicated most Manitoban shoppers have a good impression of Manitoba foods and agree with supporting local producers and processors. Consumers suggested better labelling of local products and improving awareness with a public-awareness campaign. The survey results are available online at www.gov.mb.ca/agr icul ture/statistics/releases buymbfood_surveyofmbgroceryshoppers. pdf.