Agri-Food Immigration Pilot Program

What is the Agri-Food Immigration Pilot Program?

The Agri-Food immigration pilot program 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 announced this program on July 12, 2019 to address the skilled and unskilled labour shortage in the agri-food and agriculture sectors.

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 program, 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
  • A high school diploma level or greater (Canadian equivalency)
  • A 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 Program. The meat processor employers, in turn, are required to put forward a plan to support their temporary workers to obtain Canadian permanent residency in order to become eligible for the pilot program.

In addition, if applicable, meat processing companies who apply through this program must provide a letter of support from their union. Meat processors in this category must also meet additional criteria to ensure that the rights of migrant workers are protected.


If you have an interest in exploring this program, please complete the assessment form below and we would be pleased to arrange a consultation session with a member of our expert team.

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