Food Safety Research Program

DNA in a testtube

This program offers funding for research that will further Ontario's food safety system.

Program status: This program is currently active. Call details are shown below.

Program overview

The Food Safety Research Program is an open, competitive research fund which enhances food safety in Ontario through innovative research. The program addresses the Ministry's Emergency Management Research Theme which seeks to lessen the frequency and impact of agri-food emergencies. The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA) strives to fund demand-driven research that has ready receptors in policy, programs or the marketplace.

Since 2001, the program has allocated over $10 million to 112 projects at different institutions, resulting in:

  • new or enhanced technologies and diagnostic tools that support the agri-food industry and government regulatory and laboratory programs
  • new information about emerging food hazards and contaminants
  • new strategies to reduce, eliminate or otherwise manage food safety risks

Research priorities

The Food Safety Research Program addresses the Ministry's Emergency Management Research Theme. Research needs specific to food safety have been identified in three priority areas for the 2016-2017 call. Applicants' research should address at least one specific research need within one of these three priority areas:

  • Economic analysis
  • Detection and surveillance
  • Prevention and control of disease

Who is eligible

The Food Safety Research Program gives funding to researchers with demonstrated capacity to perform quality research from:

  • business and industry
  • colleges and universities
  • government - municipal, provincial (non-Ontario) and federal
  • hospitals
  • non-government organizations
  • research institutes and foundations

Applicants outside the province of Ontario can apply but must indicate how their proposed research will benefit Ontario's agri-food sector and rural communities.

Note: you are ineligible to apply as Lead Applicant if you are:

  • staff from the Ontario provincial government
  • a researcher who has received prior funding and have an outstanding progress report

Funding amount and project duration

  • Maximum funding per project: $150,000 Canadian (includes a maximum of 25% indirect costs)
  • Project duration: Up to three years in length

How to apply

Application deadline

  • Wednesday, June 29th, 11:59 am EST
  • research who register in the RMS with a Research Office need to allow time for their internal approval process
  • the RMS does not allow submission past the deadline

Presubmission Consultation

  • Date: Thursday, June 9th, 2016
  • Time: 9:30-11:30am
  • Location: 1 Stone Road West, Guelph in Conference Centre Room 1
  • Format: In person or by Webinar
  • Register: contact Jen Weston, Research Analyst ( and indicate if you will join in person or by webinar

At the consultation, we will give a brief overview of the Food Safety Resarch Program and explain how to use the RMS to apply. There will be opportunity to ask questions.


For questions about the program contact:

Jen Weston


Phone: 519-826-3355

For questions about the Research Management System contact:

RMS Administrator


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For more information:
Author: Jen Weston, Research Analsyst/RIB
Creation Date: 10 December 2013
Last Reviewed: 20 May 2016