Prepared by Rosa Edison, Vinay Krishnan, Christopher Samuel;; Edited by Michael Albert on May 20, 2020

Canada is now accepting applications through a new Agri-Food Immigration Pilot program. The announcement was made on Friday 15 May 2020 by Federal Immigration Minister Marco Mendicino.

This three-year agri-food pilot was due to open in March 2020 but was delayed due to coronavirus outbreak.

The Pilot focus on addressing labour shortages, particularly in meat processing and mushroom production, in the agri-food sector and help meet Canada’s ambitious export targets.

The aim of this new pilot is to attract and retain workers by providing them with the opportunity to become permanent residents after an initial two-year period of temporary work permits, rather than having to renew their work permits repeatedly.

This helps the agri-food sector bring the full-time, non-seasonal foreign workers needed to fill growing labour gaps.

Mendicino stated that, “The Agri-Food Pilot will attract applicants for permanent residence who have worked in Canada, who can economically establish in Canada, and who support the labour needs of farmers and processors”.

In any given year, a maximum of 2,750 principal applicants, plus family members, will be accepted for processing. This represents a total of approximately 16,500 potential new permanent residents over the pilot’s three-year period.

 

Who is eligible for Canada’s Agri-Food Immigration Pilot?

  1. Eligible Canadian work experience

You must have at least one-year Canadian work experience (at least 1,560 hours in the past three years). This Canadian work experience must be:

  • Non-seasonal.
  • In an eligible occupation within an eligible industry; and
  • Through the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (it must have been supported by an LMIA with a minimum 12-month duration).

Eligible industries for the Agri-Food Immigration Pilot are:

  • meat product manufacturing (NAICS 3116)
  • greenhouse, nursery, and floriculture production, including mushroom production (NAICS 1114)
  • animal production, excluding aquaculture (NAICS 1121, 1122, 1123, 1124 or 1129)

Industries are classified by the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).

 

  1. A full-time, non-seasonal job offer from a Canadian employer in one of the eligible industries and occupations (outside of Quebec)

Eligible jobs for the pilot are classified by the National Occupational Classification (NOC) code:

For meat product manufacturing (NAICS 3116), eligible jobs are:

  • NOC B 6331 – Retail butchers
  • NOC C 9462 – Industrial butchers
  • NOC B 8252 – Farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers
  • NOC D 9617 – Food processing labourers

For greenhouse, nursery, and floriculture production, including mushroom production (NAICS 1114), eligible jobs are:

  • NOC B 8252 – Farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers
  • NOC C 8431 – General farm workers
  • NOC D 8611 – Harvesting labourers

For animal production, excluding aquaculture (NAICS 1121, 1122, 1123, 1124 and 1129), eligible jobs are:

  • NOC B 8252 – Farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers
  • NOC C 8431 – General farm workers

 

  1. To meet or exceed the language requirements

Must score a minimum of Level 4 Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) on an approved test in either English or French.

 

  1. To meet or exceed the educational requirements

Minimum completed level of education equivalent (or higher) to a Canadian High School diploma. A valid Educational Credentials Assessment (ECA) must support education completed outside Canada.

 

  1. To have settlement funds (if applicable)

Must prove you have enough money to support yourself and your family members when they settle in Canada.

Those who already have a valid work permit in Canada are not required to give proof of funds. If you are not already working in Canada, then the requirement for settlement funds is as follows:

Number of family members

(including those you support who are not immigrating with you)

Funds you need

(in Canadian dollars)

1 $12,960
2 $16,135
3 $19,836
4 $24,083
5 $27,315
6 $30,806
7 $34,299
For each additional family member $3,492

 

 






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