News Release Article from  Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

Archived - MP Lizon Announces Important Investment in New Product Testing & Development Spaces Supporting Southern Ontario's Food and Beverage Industries

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July 22, 2015 – Mississauga, Ontario – Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario)

Today, Member of Parliament for Mississauga East - Cooksville Wladyslaw Lizon, on behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, announced that the Harper Government will be providing up to $10.1 million that will strengthen the food and beverage sectors in southern Ontario.

MP Lizon announced an investment of up to $3.1 million for Furlani's Food Corporation to improve efficiency, productivity and boost its production capacity of specialty food products. This repayable contribution is through FedDev Ontario's Investing in Business Growth and Productivity initiative.

Furlani's Food Corporation is a privately-owned manufacturer of specialty garlic bread products, such as garlic toast, breadsticks and loaves. The company will be investing in advanced production equipment and a building expansion to add 21,900-square feet of freezer space. In addition to increasing production capacity, the adoption of new technologies will allow the company to develop a new line of breadstick products and expand its existing line of products, which will enhance the company's competitiveness in global markets.

In addition, George Brown College, through its Office of Research and Innovation, is receiving funding of up to $7,001,072 to expand their Food Innovation and Research Studio (FIRSt) and establish new labs for research and development to support product and process improvement for the food and beverage industry. This

$14-million project will include a Bake and Large Quantity Lab; a Beverage Research Lab, a Culinary and Large Quantity Lab and a new Industry Engagement and Interaction facility, to support the introduction and launch of new food products and services.

This investment, funded through FedDev Ontario's Investing in Commercialization Partnerships initiative, will also assist small- and medium-sized companies to access the necessary equipment, testing and development space and networking opportunities needed to bring new products and services to market.

Quick Facts

  • Established in 1984, Furlani's Food Corporation has grown from a small, garlic bread manufacturer to an established baker and distributer of fresh and frozen specialty bread products.
  • This project is expected to create up to 74 full-time equivalent jobs by 2017 and an additional 34 full-time equivalent jobs in the two years after this project's completion. It will leverage close to $8.8 million through private sector investments.
  • The investment in George Brown College will build on the successes of the Food Innovation and Research Studio (FIRSt), which is supported and managed through GBC's Centre for Hospitality and Culinary Arts – Canada's largest applied research and education centre, focusing on hospitality and culinary arts.
  • This project will create up to 76 jobs by the project's completion plus an additional 54 jobs in the three years after the project.
  • FedDev Ontario's contribution of $7 million will leverage another $7 million as follows: $4.7 million from George Brown College, $0.5 million from NSERC, and $2 million from industry partners.
  • Ontario has the largest food and beverage processing industry in Canada and accounted for 14.7 percent of manufacturing jobs in 2013.


"Today's announcement speaks to our Government's commitment to supporting quality manufacturers and keeping a strong food and beverage supply chain in Ontario. This investment will allow reputable and innovative organizations to strengthen manufacturing capacity, which will pave the way to economic growth, jobs and opportunities."

– Wladyslaw Lizon, Member of Parliament for Mississauga East - Cooksville

"Furlani's has grown to become one of the strongest competitors in frozen specialty bread production, through its dedicated employees, emphasis on continuous improvement and innovation, and willingness to invest to grow. We are grateful and honored to receive this financing from FedDev Ontario. It is a great support to our company and allows us to expand our capabilities, improve our competitive position, and continue to grow."

– Jonathan Kawaja, Chief Operating Officer, Furlani's Food Corporation

"George Brown College is proud of the role we play in supporting job creation and business growth. Our increased capabilities in applied research, made possible by FedDev Ontario and by donor and industry support, will result in new and enhanced partnerships within the food and beverage industry. This will drive product and business innovation while providing our students with hands-on experience as they prepare for their future careers."

– Anne Sado, President, George Brown College

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Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear

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FedDev Ontario

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