Agri-Food Immigration Pilot

How to immigrate to Canada through Agri-Food Immigration Pilot?

What is the Agri-Food Immigration Pilot?

The Agri-Food immigration pilot is a new immigration program launched by the Government of Canada to address labor shortages in the agriculture industry, particularly in retail butchers, industrial butchers, food processing labourers, harvesting labourers, general farm workers, and farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers. The Canadian Government officially announced on Friday, July 12, 2019, that the previously declared pilot aimed to target vacant positions in the agriculture sector has started.

Which occupations are eligible?

Meat processing

Retail butcher

Industrial butcher

Food processing laborer

Harvesting laborer for year-round mushroom production work and greenhouse crop production

General farm worker for year-round mushroom, greenhouse crop production work, or as well as livestock raising

Farm supervisor and specialized livestock worker for meat processing, year-round mushroom production, greenhouse crop work or livestock raising.

To be eligible to participate in the pilot, candidates must have:

  • 12 months of full-time, non-seasonal Canadian work experience in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, in an eligible occupation in processing meat products, raising livestock, or growing mushrooms or greenhouse crops
  • A Canadian Language Benchmark level 4 in English or French
  • An education at high school level or greater (Canadian equivalency)
  • An indeterminate job offer for full-time, non-seasonal work in Canada, outside of Quebec, at or above the prevailing wage

ESDC is going to issue a two-year LMIA (Labour Market Impact Assessment) to eligible employers, as well as employers who are using the Agri-Food Immigration Pilot. The meat processor employers, in turn, will be needed to come up with a plan to support their temporary workers to obtain Canadian permanent residency in order to become eligible for the pilot.

In addition, unionized meat processors have to provide a letter of support from their union. Meat processors in this category will also need to meet additional criteria to ensure that the labor market and migrant workers are protected. In order to develop these requirements, a tripartite working group is expected to be formed immediately.

Also, taking into account efforts by agriculture employers to help foreign workers to receive Canadian permanent residency, there will be adjustments for the limit on low-wage foreign workers is calculated.

This limit calculation may not be subjected to employers who have the previous history of hiring workers who have made the transition to permanent residence.


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