Agri food pilot program

IRCC Announce Extension of Agri-food Pilot Program Until May 14, 2025 

In a recent announcement, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) stated that it is extending the Agri-Food Immigration pilot program and lifting the annual occupational cap.

In a statement issued today, Immigration Minister Sean Fraser announced that the Agri-Food Pilot Program will now run until May 14, 2025. As part of the pilot program, experienced workers in the agriculture and food industries are being facilitated through the process of becoming permanent residents of Canada

Overview on news

The ministry of canada also declared about lifting of the annual occupational caps. Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) says removing these limits will offer a chance for more qualified and eligible applicants to apply for Canada immigration. IRCC will continue to make additional changes by December this year. The government is going to gradually enforce additional changes to the pilot, including:

  • Granting family members of pilot project participants access to open work permits regardless of their degree of employment competence;
  • Allowing unions to verify a candidate’s employment history in place of employer references;
  • Applicants with permanent residency for canada will have the option of meeting the job offer requirement, which includes the offer’s median wage requirement, or meeting the education requirement (including an educational credential assessment verification); 
  • Work experience obtained by vulnerable workers under an open work permit will be accepted under LMIA in Canada pilot program. According to IRCC, this will allow more workers to qualify.

Canada Agri-Food Pilot program was established in 2020,With the goal of assisting in the reduction of manpower shortages in the meat processing, mushroom and greenhouse production, and livestock-raising industries. At the time of the announcement, IRCC stated that for the next three years, it would accept up to 2,750 principal candidates and their family members per year.

A few days ago, Canada revealed that according to their research, 66% of farmers do not have any sort of succession plan for the upcoming years, although 40% of farmers in Canada are expected to retire over the next ten years. In order to solve the shortfall of canada farmers, Canada’s immigration regulations allow for the admission of 30,000 new immigrants with a focus on agriculture and farmers.

Canada, however, questioned whether or not to extend the scheme due to its low financial resources. However, they are having trouble finding farmers, so they have extended the project by two years and given Indian farmers the opportunity to move under the programme with their families.

What occupations are eligible for the program?

The following professions and industries fall under the pilot’s eligibility:

Meat product manufacturing;

  1. Retail butchers
  2. Industrial butchers
  3. Farm supervisors and specialised livestock workers
  4. Food processing labourers


Production in greenhouses, nurseries, and floriculture, including mushroom cultivation;

  1. Farm supervisors and specialised livestock workers
  2. General farm workers
  3. Harvesting labourers.

Animal production excluding aquaculture:

  1. Farm supervisors and specialised livestock workers
  2. General farm workers

Eligibility for Agri-food immigration program

  • To be able to apply for permanent residency under the Agri-Food Pilot, applicants must fulfil the following criteria:
  • Having worked a minimum of one full-time, non-seasonal year’s worth of hours (at least 1,560) in one or more qualifying Canadian enterprises or professions in the three years before.
  • A full-time, permanent work offer in one of the authorised disciplines or professions must come from a Canadian employer (outside of Quebec).
  • English or French language proficiency at the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level 4 
  • The amount of hours worked in full-time employment should be taken into account if you have an educational credential assessment (ECA) report from a reputable institution or professional body proving that you finished a foreign credential at the secondary school level or higher.
  • You must maintain your status as a Canadian permanent residence if you already have one.
  • Have sufficient funds set aside for settlement (prove that you have the means to support yourself and any additional family members.)

Farmer/ candidate can file their Canada PR Visa application with IRCC if fulfil all the above-specified requirements. They must put together a thorough application in accordance with the instructions and paperwork provided on the Canada Agri-Food Immigration Pilot’s official website.

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