TORONTO — Food and Beverage Ontario has announced the launch of CareersNOW! — a province-wide program designed to rapidly fill immediate job vacancies in the food and beverage processing sector as well as attract future talent to the province’s number one manufacturing employer.
From small to medium-sized family businesses through to large corporations, solving the labour gap has been a top priority for the industry. Ontario’s more than 4,000 food processing operations represent the province’s largest manufacturing sector employer but growing the workforce continues to be a challenge.
“Many businesses in Ontario are like Hans Dairy, focused on making great food for Canadians but with limited time or expertise to connect with job seekers. CareersNOW! is making certain that people developing their careers have every opportunity to match their skill sets and ambitions with employers in our sector,” said Sarab Hans, CEO, Hans Dairy.
Labour market analysis by Food Processing Skills Canada has shown that the industry across Canada will have an employment gap of up to 54,000 people by 2025. Poor industry perceptions, language barriers, limited outreach to underrepresented demographics and a skills mismatch have all been factors in recruiting people.
CareersNOW! will optimize Food and Beverage Ontario’s initiatives Taste Your Future to profile careers, and expand Frontline Food Facts to provide essential skills training and new opportunities for employment. Delivering targeted employer resources will round out the program. CareersNOW! was developed with project partners – Food, Health & Consumer Products of Canada, FoodGrads, Food Processing Skills Canada, Magnet, Ontario Chamber of Commerce, Meat & Poultry Ontario, University of Guelph and Excellence in Manufacturing Consortium.
“Workers in the food and beverage sector are heroes that have been working tirelessly to keep shelves stocked for hard-working families. This new program will encourage more people to join these rewarding careers, making them and their communities more stronger than ever,” said Monte McNaughton, Minister of Labour, Training and Skills Development.
“People have recognized that food and beverage processing is an essential and resilient sector. Food and Beverage Ontario is leveraging this heightened level of awareness by supporting businesses with employment resources that can be activated quickly through technology solutions proven in other sectors,” said Chris Conway, Food and Beverage Ontario
Food and Beverage Ontario touts itself as the “provincial professional leadership organization of choice in Ontario for members of the food and beverage processing community.”
CareersNOW! is funded in part by the Canadian and Ontario governments.