businessNOW™ is the most comprehensive weekly round-up of business and organizational news and events from Peterborough and across the Kawarthas.
This week’s business and organizational news includes Entomo Farms of Norwood receiving an inaugural Excellence in Agriculture Award from the Ontario government, the federal government investing $71 million in local cellular broadband and connectivity to tackle cellular dead zones across Eastern Ontario, Mercedes-Benz Peterborough donating $10,000 to the Peterborough Regional Health Centre Foundation, and a Toronto couple donating $50,000 to the Peterborough Humane Society’s new animal care centre.
Also featured this week is the new Farmhill Weddings wedding venue in Keene launching in 2020, Lakefield Youth Unlimited purchasing the Tribal Voices building in Lakefield, Peterborough filmmakers winning an award for their documentary on the Pig’s Ear Tavern, Venture13 in Cobourg hosting guests of the Tri-Association’s 15th Annual Manufacturing Conference in October, and Shaw Computer Systems Inc. rebranding as Shawcs IT.
New regional business events added this week include the Northumberland Chamber’s business networking event at Lorenz Conveying Products on July 11th, the Bancroft Chamber hosting Mineral Collecting Tours from July 11th to August 31st, Central Smith Creamery hosting an ice cream social fundraiser for PRHC Foundation on July 20th, and VentureNorth hosting a “Celebration of Collaboration BBQ” in Peterborough on July 26th.
Entomo Farms of Norwood receives inaugural Excellence in Agriculture Award from Ontario government
Last Thursday (July 4), Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs Minister Ernie Hardeman and Northumberland-Peterborough South MPP David Piccini presented Entomo Farms of Norwood with an inaugural Excellence in Agriculture Award.
As a leader in cricket powder for food products for people, pets and livestock, Entomo Farms supplies over 50 companies with its products. In addition, the farm has begun harvesting the cricket castings as a super fertilizer, aiming to be a zero-waste facility. Since 2015, Entomo Farms has created 30 full-time jobs, with a planned expansion of an additional 28 full-time positions.
“Ontario’s agri-food sector is a driving force for innovation and economic growth in our province,” Hardeman said. “Agri-food businesses like Entomo Farms are always pushing boundaries and expanding economic opportunities. Their bold approach to building and growing their business has resulted in them becoming the largest company in North America raising crickets for human consumption — and they did it in just four years.
The Excellence in Agriculture Awards recognize agri-food businesses, individuals, and organizations that have raised the bar for agri-food excellence, demonstrated leadership in their field, undertaken strategic product development benefiting their sector, or advanced technological innovation.
“We’re very honoured to be recognized by the province,” said Entomo Farms president Jarrod Goldin. “Producing crickets as food is new on many fronts, so we’ve been lucky to have strong support from Health Canada, OMAFRA, and especially the local communities in Peterborough and Norwood. Many other countries around the world already know how beneficial eating crickets can be for your health and we’re excited to bring this clean, nutritious food source to more people at home.”
The Excellence in Agriculture Award recipients were chosen by a committee of agri-food sector leaders. The awards recognize innovation for one primary producer, one processor, and one agri-food organization, and gives honorary mention to an additional six innovations.
Federal government invests $71 million in local cellular broadband and connectivity to tackle cellular dead zones across Eastern Ontario
On Thursday (July 4), the federal government announced it will provide the Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN) with $71 million for its share of funding to help fill gaps in mobile broadband coverage that are standing in the way of the region’s economic development.
EORN is a non-profit organization created by the Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus.
The funding, combined with the Government of Ontario’s commitment of $71 million to the project, clears the way for a $213 million public-private partnership to improve both the reach and quality of mobile broadband services in the region.
All members of the Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus and most municipalities within the Eastern Ontario Mayors’ Caucus are contributing to the $10 million municipal share. Mobile carriers, who will be selected through a competitive bidding process, are expected to provide the balance of the funding.
The first phase of the project involves building 317 new telecommunications towers and an additional 32 local internet access points to improve overall mobile coverage for residents of Eastern Ontario. The second phase will identify the capacity gaps that result from heavy user traffic, upgrade equipment to reduce network overloads, and improve service quality in rural communities.
Once completed, the project will improve mobile coverage for over 1.1 million residents in 102 communities in Eastern Ontario, including the County of Peterborough, Curve Lake First Nation, and Hiawatha First Nation.
“EORN is building on the investment we’ve already made in broadband infrastructure across the region to close the gap in mobile services and improve economic growth, quality of life, and public safety,” says EORN chair J. Murray Jones. “We welcome and appreciate the support of the federal government for this project. Combined with provincial and municipal funding, we can now proceed with the next steps to make improved connectivity a reality for our region.”
There are currently significant gaps in both the reach and capacity of mobile broadband networks across areas of rural Eastern Ontario, with 40 per cent of the area not having access to high-definition services that allows streaming high-definition video, 20 per cent of the area does not having access to standard definition video, used for typical mobile app use and video app calling, and 10 per cent not having voice call service.
Mercedes-Benz Peterborough donates $10,000 to Peterborough Regional Health Centre Foundation
Mercedes-Benz Peterborough has donated $10,000 to Peterborough Regional Health Centre Foundation, the proceeds of the annual Mercedes-Benz Peterborough Father’s Day Car Show held on Sunday, June 16th.
The proceeds will be used to fund equipment and technology supporting patient care at PRHC.
Toronto couple donates $50,000 to Peterborough Humane Society’s new animal care centre
An couple from the Toronto area, who wish to remain anonymous, have pledged $50,000 to the Peterborough Humane Society’s campaign to build a new state-of-the-art animal care centre in Peterborough.
The couple was were inspired to give because of their love of pets.
“Our wish is that all pets should receive nothing but the best care and a loving home, and this centre will be a massive step toward that goal,” the couple said. “We look forward to seeing the Peterborough Animal Centre becoming a reality.”
Designed by Peterborough-based Lett Architects, the new Peterborough Animal Care Centre will sit on 20 acres of land on Technology Drive and will set the standard for animal shelters in Canada. The purpose-built facility will house the Humane Society’s new Adoption and Education Centre and will allow for expansion of the Humane Society’s outreach, education, and advocacy programs, including plans for future youth programming and educational partnerships with both Trent University and Fleming College.
The Peterborough Animal Care Centre will also be home to Canada’s first Provincial Dog Rehab Centre (in partnership with the Ontario SPCA and Humane Society), and the region’s only High-Volume Spay/Neuter Clinic. The Humane Society anticipates that over 5,000 animals will benefit from this service each year, reducing the number of unwanted pets in our province, supporting other local rescue groups and helping animals become available for adoption sooner.
The Peterborough Humane Society has already received donations from local families and businesses, as well as an investment of $1.68 million from the City of Peterborough and $2 million from the Ontario SPCA and Humane Society. The society is now over the halfway mark of its $10 million fundraising goal.
New Farmhill Weddings wedding venue in Keene to launch in 2020
Jenn Austin-Driver and Matt Smith are bulding a new wedding venue in Keene.
Farmhill Weddings, located at 2709 Dillon Road on the rolling hills of Millen + Smith Acres, is a non-traditional wedding venue focused on providing a scenic farm experience with local farm-to-table menu options.
The couple recently launched a new website at www.farmhillweddings.com and are taking bookings for 2020-21.
Austin-Driver and Smith have been photographers in the wedding industry for the last 10 years and have photographed over 200 weddings. That experience inspired them to create Farmhill Weddings, for which they received a grant last December through the Peterborough & the Kawarthas Business Advisory Centre’s Starter Company Plus program.
Farmhill Weddings will connect couples planning their wedding with vetted vendors, such as photographers, officiants, bands and DJs, florists, and local caterers and food suppliers.
The venue will be constructed and ready for operation in 2020.
Lakefield Youth Unlimited purchases Tribal Voices building in Lakefield
Lakefield Youth Unlimited, a satellite of Kawartha Youth for Christ, has purchased the Tribal Voices building beside the bridge in Lakefield.
An anonymous lender provided a no-interest and no-payment loan for as long as the organization owns the building, which Lakefield Youth Unlimited plans to move into by this fall.
Lakefield Youth Unlimited has been part of the Lakefield community for 15 years, working together with local residents, businesses, churches, schools, and government for local youth of our community. The organization currently offers a Junior High Gym Night, provides employment and mentoring to several youth in its Garden Project, helps host Kindness Club and Ping Pong Club at local elementary school, and offer school support in classrooms.
In its new space, the organization plans to offer shared meeting rooms, life skill programs for youth, junior and senior high school programs, gathering spaces for families, and after-school programming.
While Lakefield Youth Unlimited was supplied with the resources to purchase the Tribal Voices building, the organization is raising $20,000 by August 14th to pay off the remainder of short-term loans, as well as an additional $55,000 by October 1st to begin renovations in the fall. To make a donation, visit youthunlimitedkaw.com/lakefield/donate/
Peterborough filmmakers win award for documentary on the Pig’s Ear Tavern
Local documentary film Last Beer at the Pig’s Ear has won a gold award from the Spotlight Documentary Film Awards.
The documentary on the historic Pigs’ Ear Tavern, which closed in April 2017 after 152 years of operation, was written and directed by Peter blow and produced by Malcolm Byard, with editing and cinematography by Rob Viscardis.
VIDEO: “Last Beer at the Pig’s Ear” promo trailer
It was the final film screened at this year’s ReFrame Film Festival in downtown Peterborough.
The Spotlight Documentary Film Awards promote experienced and new documentary filmmakers through an international film competition.
Venture13 in Cobourg to host guests of Tri-Association’s 15th Annual Manufacturing Conference in October
The Venture13 Innovation and Entrepreneurship Centre in Cobourg will be hosting guests of the Tri-Association’s 15th Annual Manufacturing Conference this October.
The conference takes place on Thursday, October 24th at the Cobourg Community Centre, directly across from Venture13. Throughout the day, conference guests will have the opportunity to choose up to four workshop activities located in the Northman Industrial Park, including two plans tours (Cameco/Graphic Packaging), a workshop with the Cobourg Police Service on cybersecurity, and a workshop encompassing interactive demonstrations at the Venture13 TechZone.
The guests who attend the interactive demonstrations workshop offered at the Venture13 TechZone will see robotic demonstrations, interact with virtual reality training, observe the MicroFactory Co-op (Canada’s only manufacturing co-op) in action, exchange insight with the Durham College Hub for Applied Research in Artificial Intelligence for Business Solutions, and participate in a workshop explaining the many funding opportunities for everything guests enjoyed in the Venture13 TechZone.
The Tri-Association group consists of the Kawartha Manufacturers’ Association, the Quinte Manufacturers Association, and the Northumberland Manufacturers Association. For more information and to register for the conference, visit www.themanufacturingconference.ca.
Shaw Computer Systems Inc. is now Shawcs IT
Shaw Computer Systems Inc. is now Shawcs IT.
The technology services company, locally owned and operated by business partners Martin Boruta and Carlye Mongraw, has rebranded and moved from its location in the north end of Peterborough to 236 King Street in the AON City Centre building in downtown Peterborough.
Shawcs IT is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday (with emergency contract support available 24/7).
For more information, visit the company’s new website at www.shawcsit.com
Fireside chat on artificial intelligence in the workplace at Venture13 in Cobourg on July 9
Venture13 is hosting the fourth instalment in its Fireside Chat series from 7 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, July 9th at Venture13 (739 D’Arcy St., Cobourg)
“Artificial Intelligence in the Workplace: The Human-Machine Connection” will focus on using AI technology in the workplace and how businesses are making the most impact with AI. You can learn about the human-machine connection in the workplace, process automation, Internet of Things (IoT) and analytics, augmented and virtual reality, AI and sentiment analysis on social media, autonomous vehicles, and more.
Guest speakers at the event are Alex Papanicolaou (Director and Lead Designer at the Microfactory Coop at Venture13), Aman Bhargava (a University of Toronto Engineering student specializing in machine intelligence and design), and Joseph Boggard (Trent University instructor from the Computing & Information Systems Degree Program).
Everyone is welcome to attend the free fireside chat. To secure your space, register at www.eventbrite.com/e/fireside-chat-ai-in-the-workplace-tickets-63797365638
Summer Company Staples Day in Peterborough on July 10
Students participating in the Summer Company program will be showcasing their businesses from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 10th at Staples Peterborough (109 Park St. S., Peterborough).
Ontario’s flagship youth entrepreneurship program, Summer Company provides students aged 15 to 29 an opportunity to open and operate their own business during summer break. Peterborough & the Kawarthas Business Advisory Centre has partnered with the program since 2001.
The 2019 program is currently underway, with seven students at the high school and post-secondary levels getting ready to start their first business. Students are in the process of receiving a grant of $1,500 from the Ontario government to spend towards their start-up expenses.
Summer Company Staples Day not only provides students with the opportunity to showcase their businesses to the public, but provides them with experience in networking, advertisement, and communicating their brand to the community.
This event is open to all members of the public and is a great opportunity to support the area’s young business owners.
Northumberland Chamber hosts business economic outlook breakfast meeting with MP Kim Russ and MPP David Piccini in Cobourg on July 11
The Northumberland Central Chamber of Commerce is hosting “Northumberland County Economic Outlook”, a breakfast meeting from 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, July 11th at The Mill Restaurant & Pub (990 Ontario St., Cobourg).
Northumberland—Peterborough South MP Kim Rudd and MPP David Piccini, along with Northumberland County Director of Economic Development & Tourism Dan Borowec, will each provide an overview of initiatives, objectives, challenges, and opportunities affecting economic development in Northumberland.
Registration and networking begins at 7:30 a.m., followed by breakfast and presentations at 8 a.m. and a question-and-answer session at 8:30 a.m.
The cost is $15 for Chamber members and $20 for non-members. Registration and payment is required by Tuesday, July 9th.
For more information and to register, visit nccofc.ca/events/details/northumberland-county-economic-outlook-1607.
Northumberland Chamber hosts business networking event at Lorenz Conveying Products on July 11
The Northumberland Central Chamber of Commerce is hosting its monthly “Meet and Greet” business networking event from 5 to 7 p.m. on Thursday, July 11th at Lorenz Conveying Products (75 White St., Cobourg).
Lorenz Conveying Products — North America’s leading manufacturer of pneumatic conveying components, parts, and accessories — is celebrating its 40th anniversary.
Admission is free for both Chamber members and non-members (the non-member fee has been waived for this event). However, advance registration is requested at nccofc.ca/events/details/nccofc-meet-greet-lorenz-conveying-products-1602.
Bancroft Chamber hosting Mineral Collecting Tours from July 11 to August 31
The Bancroft & District Chamber of Commerce is hosting Mineral Collecting Tours from Thursday, July 11th to Saturday, August 31st at various locations in Hastings County.
Registration is held at 9 a.m. at the Chamber office (51 Hastings St. N., Bancroft) on the day of each tour, with tours departing at 9:30 a.m. The tours take place on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, with each tour lasting around five hours.
Participants are responsible for their own equipment (mandatory safety glasses and closed-in footwear and rockhounding equipment) and transportation. The cost is $17 for adults, $12 for youth aged 16 and under, or $50 for a family of up to five people. Additional fees are required for specific sites.
For a tour schedule and more information, visit www.bancroftdistrict.com/bancroft-nature-discovery-tours/.
Peterborough Chamber hosts environmental practices seminar in Peterborough on July 17
The next Peterborough Chamber of Commerce Lunch Box Learning seminar takes place from 12 to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, July 17th at the Chamber’s boardroom (175 George St. N., Peterborough).
Rachel Northey of Pinchin will speak on the topic “Environmental Practices to Manage your Property”.
The seminar is free to attend for members of the Chamber and members of the Women’s Business Network of Peterborough. Bring your own lunch.
To register, visit peterboroughchamber.ca.
Central Smith Creamery hosting ice cream social fundraiser for PRHC Foundation on July 20
Central Smith Creamery is hosting an ice cream social in support of the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) Foundation from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, July 20th at the creamery (739 Lindsay Rd. Selwyn).
The family-friendly event will feature a silent auction, a jumpy castle, games, a BBQ, face painting, an obstacle course, an ice cream eating contest, and an open mic.
All proceeds from the day will be donated to the Peterborough Regional Health Centre (PRHC) Foundation.
For more information, visit the Facebook event page.
VentureNorth hosts “Celebration of Collaboration BBQ” in Peterborough on July 26
VentureNorth is hosting a “Celebration of Collaboration BBQ” from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, July 26th at the VentureNorth building (270 George St. N., Peterborough).
The business hub in downtown Peterborough is home to various local economic development organizations including the Innovation Cluster, Peterborough & the Kawarthas Economic Development, and Community Futures Peterborough. Ashburnham Realty, Junior Achievement Peterborough, Lakeland, Muskoka, the Peterborough Downtown Business Improvement Area, and the Peterborough Chamber of Commerce will also be participating in the event.
The open house event is an opportunity to learn more about these organizations and more, and will feature a BBQ catered by Franz’s Butcher Shop & Catering with samples from Publican House Brewery, live music from Paper Shakers, and prizes.
For more business-related events in the Kawarthas, check out our Business Events column.