Four of the Ontario produce industry’s hardworking individuals were honoured on November 15 at the Ontario Produce Marketing Association’s (OPMA) 28th Annual Gala and Awards Ceremony.
The OPMA Annual awards are presented to individuals or organizations whose efforts have made a significant impact on the Ontario produce industry. Over four hundred people from across the industry gathered at the Universal Event Space in Vaughan, Ontario to celebrate the industry and recognize the achievements of the four award-winners.
The OPMA Fresh Award, presented to a young individual who demonstrates a fervent determination to improve the quality, distribution or consumption of fruits and vegetables marketed within or outside of Ontario during 2019, was awarded to Quinton Woods, from Gwillimdale Farms for his dedication to helping this family-owned operation become one of Ontario's largest grower-packer-shippers of root vegetables.
The Cory Clack-Streef Produce Person of the Year Award went to Steve Bamford from Fresh Advancements for his relentless efforts to maintain the current location of the Ontario Food Terminal. He spearheaded, oversaw and was directly involved in implementing a comprehensive strategy to encourage the Government of Ontario to maintain the Ontario Food Terminal at its existing location in Etobicoke.
The OPMA Outstanding Achievement Award was presented to Tom O’Neill from the Norfolk Fruit Growers’ Association. Over the years, he has dedicated countless hours of his personal time to bettering the industry through his involvement in organizations such as the Ontario Apple Marketing Commission, Ontario Apple Growers and the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers' Association. Tom has also served as the Canadian representative to the U.S. Apple Association and on numerous committees including CPMA (CTAC) and the OPMA Member Advisory Committee.
Lastly, the OPMA Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Linda Cavasin from Metro for pushing the envelope to promote produce at the forefront of grocery retail. She has vigorously supported Ontario produce and her dedication is one of the main reasons Metro and Food Basics stores have strong showings year after year at the Foodland awards.
Source: Ontario Produce Marketing Association November 15, 2019 news release