The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in many countries closing their borders, including Canada, in an effort to reduce the number of coronavirus cases. These border closures have led to shortages in PPE, raw materials, and consumer products, all of which contributed to a nationwide realization: Canadians want more products made locally.
COVID-19 has rapidly shifted consumer behavior on a global scale by drastically changing our buying behaviors and the way Canadians think about imported goods.
Reducing our reliance on imported goods will take time, but the Ontario provincial government has taken a step in the right direction by helping to create and generate interest in the Ontario Made program, a new way to promote locally made products.
How Will This Program Help Ontario Manufacturers?
The highlight of the Ontario Made program is the creation of the logo pictured to the right that local manufacturers can use to identify their Ontario-made products.
“We can’t forget that as a province our collective buying power is massive. We generate 40% of the Canadian economy.”
– Ontario Premier Doug Ford
An online portal is currently being developed to connect consumers with Ontario Made products. As Ontario moves into Stage 3 of reopening businesses within the province, the provincial government wants products that support local manufacturers to be on the forefront of consumers’ minds.
Manufacturers can register their locally made products to use the Ontario Made logo on the supportontariomade.ca website.
Developed by Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME)
Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) was granted $500,000 to develop the Ontario Made program utilizing funding allocated to the $50M Ontario Together Fund (OTF), a fund created to help businesses recover and do their part in fighting COVID-19.
CME will meet with major Ontario retailers to promote this program in stores, as well as utilize their (currently under development) online portal that will connect consumers with products that have the Ontario Made program logo.
If you’re a Canadian manufacturing business with revenues affected during the coronavirus pandemic, we strongly encourage you to speak with a member of the Mentor Works team to start the application process for COVID-19 government support programs and various other ongoing federal and provincial grant and loan programs.