TORONTO – The Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA) congratulates Premier Dalton McGuinty and Ontario’s Liberal Party for achieving a third term and forming Ontario’s new minority government. CRFA also congratulates Mr. Hudak and the Ontario PC Party for becoming the Official Opposition, and recognizes the important breakthrough Ms. Horwath and the NDP Party have made in this election.
“In a pre-election survey, CRFA members identified rising energy prices, wages, beverage alcohol pricing, red tape and taxes as key issues of concern,” says Ron Reaman, CRFA’s Ontario Vice President. “It has never been so critical for Ontario’s government to truly understand the issues confronting our industry and the significant role the restaurant sector plays in the economy and culture of the province.”
Ontario’s restaurants lag every other province in profitability with only a 3.4% pre-tax profit margin. The industry needs a comprehensive sector strategy to address key issues and a policy environment that allows restaurants to prosper and contribute to the province’s economic recovery.
To this end, CRFA is urging the Ontario government to take a more integrated approach to agri-food policy. As part of this, CRFA is calling for the creation of a Blue Ribbon Panel to develop a sector-specific strategy to maximize Ontario restaurants’ ongoing contribution to the provincial economy.
Statistics Canada’s monthly job figures released today reveal a net increase of 61,000 new jobs nationwide in September, half of which were in the accommodations and foodservice sector.
“With Canada’s restaurant industry creating such significant new job numbers nationwide, we have an opportunity to make an important contribution to the province’s economic recovery,” says Reaman. “We need our government to work with us to create conditions for success so we can tap into the latent potential of Ontario’s restaurants to drive job creation.”
Ontario’s $23-billion restaurant industry is the province’s fourth-largest employer with 400,800 employees, annual sales accounting for 4% of Ontario’s GDP, and 30,400 locations creating jobs in every community across the province.
CRFA is one of Canada’s largest business associations, with more than 30,000 members representing restaurants, bars, caterers, institutions and other foodservice providers. CRFA works to create an environment that allows foodservice operators in communities across Canada to grow and prosper.