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Ontario’s Fertilizer Challenge funds 10 projects

March 23, 2023  By Government of Ontario

In order to counter supply chain issues that are causing fertilizer shortages, the Ontario government is investing in 10 new and innovative projects as part of the $2 million Fertilizer Challenge. Funding through the Fertilizer Challenge is supporting Ontario-made fertilizer options, alternatives and technologies that will be available and in market by the spring of 2024.

“Our government will always do what it takes to support Ontario’s farmers, that’s why we developed the Fertilizer Challenge to help mitigate fertilizer supply chain issues,” said Lisa Thompson, Ontario minister of agriculture, food and rural affairs. “Projects across the province are underway to provide farmers with fertilizer resources developed and produced right here in Ontario.”

Following consultations with farmers and the agri-food sector, Ontario launched the Fertilizer Challenge to address ongoing supply chain challenges, while promoting innovation in the province’s agri-food sector. Enabling more domestic production will reduce the province’s reliance on foreign fertilizers and further solidify the stability of the agricultural industry.


St. Thomas’ CRF AgriTech LP, one of the 10 projects currently underway, is a new fertilizer manufacturing company with a patented coating that can be applied to a wide range of fertilizers. This product can reduce nutrient application rates while maintaining and improving crop yields and reduce dependence on imported fertilizer. This new form of combination and coated fertilizer is on track to begin production this spring.

“Our fertilizer manufacturing plant’s proximity to key agricultural areas will make these innovative products easily accessible to Canadian growers,” said Mike Pastir, CRF AgriTech general manager, in a statement. “Through the production of PurYield, a polymer-coated fertilizer that reduces nutrient losses, CRF AgriTech provides new solutions for today’s growers to optimize crop performance, increase their profitability and focus on environmental sustainability.”

“Ontario’s agricultural sector is a hotbed for innovation,” said Dave Smardon, CEO of Bioenterprise Canada – the organization responsible for delivering the Fertilizer Challenge. “We must leverage Canada’s in-house expertise and examine the methods we use to grow and protect our food, while also protecting the planet and food security obligations to address the most prominent issues we face as a global community.”


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