BlogAgri-Food Pilot: Permanent Residence for Agriculture Workers!

23 February 2022

About the Author

The Agri-Food Pilot (“AFP”) is a Canadian economic-class immigration program introduced in May 2020 that will remain in effect until May 2023. This 3-year pilot program was implemented to address the labor needs of Canadian employers in the agriculture sector. The AFP provides a direct pathway to Canadian permanent residence for skilled workers employed in agricultural industries across Canada.

Designed with the goal of retaining vital workers in the high demand agricultural sectors of meat and food processing, mushroom and greenhouse vegetable cultivation and live-stock production, the AFP program is a direct pathway to permanent residence for workers in the Canadian agricultural industry. The AFP pathway is a step up from the short-term seasonal work permits foreign nationals were able to receive formerly.

The AFP program provides experienced, non-seasonal selected workers with an opportunity to permanently settle in Canada. To be eligible for permanent residence, qualifying foreign nationals must obtain a genuine job offer in an eligible occupation belonging to a specified industry and the offer of employment must be for a full-time, non seasonal, permanent position.

Applicants with an eligible offer of employment must demonstrate that they meet the minimum educational requirement of a Canadian high school diploma or equivalent, demonstrate language proficiency in English or French at the Canadian Language Benchmark (“CLB”) level of 4 and have acquired 1-year of eligible Canadian work experience within the past 3 years based on a Labour Market Impact Assessment (“LMIA”) work permit.

Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (“IRCC”) has set out that applicants who have maintained valid temporary status in Canada and meet the above requirements can apply for permanent residence under the AFP. Additionally, applicants who are currently not working in Canada must demonstrate that they have adequate settlement funds available to support themselves and their family members in Canada. See Link: Settlement Funds.

Eligible agricultural industries under the pilot program include:

    1. Meat processing and production:
      • retail butchers;
      • industrial butchers;
      • farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers; and
      • food processing labourers.
    2. Greenhouse, nursery and floriculture cultivation workers, including mushroom production:
      • farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers;
      • general farm workers; and
      • harvesting labourers.
    3. Animal and livestock production, excluding aquaculture:
      • farm supervisors and specialized livestock workers; and
      • general farm workers.

IRCC has committed to processing 2,750 applications through the AFP stream annually and applications will be processed on a first come, first served basis each year. The annual limits under each occupation include:

Eligible Occupations Annual Limit of Applications
Farm supervisor or specialized livestock worker (NOC B 8252) 50
Industrial butcher (NOC C 9462) or retail butcher (NOC B 6331) 1470
Food processing labourer (NOC D 9617)730 730
General farm worker (NOC C 8431) 200
Harvesting labourer (NOC D 8611) 300

 

At the introduction of the AFP program in May 2020, the former Minister of Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship, The Honourable Marco E. L. Mendicino, expressed the importance of attracting and retaining talented workers in the agriculture industry, including foreign workers who come to Canada on a temporary basis and want to settle in Canada permanently.

Supporting workers in the agricultural industry not only strengthens the economy, but also ensures food security for all Canadians. This is key to both maintaining and improving the standard of living for all Canadians.

The AFP stream will accept applications until May 14, 2023. Prospective applicants should take advantage of this opportunity to gain permanent residence status while economically establishing themselves in Canada.

About the Author

  • Preet Gill is delighted to be joining the Sas & Ing team as a law graduate. She first started working with Catherine Sas in 2015 as a summer intern. While working with Catherine’s team, she became invested in pursuing a career in law. Preet obtained her Bachelor of Laws with Honours from the University of Liverpool, School of Law and Social Justice in 2019. Throughout University, Preet gained valuable experience in Immigration Law as a summer student with Sas & Ing. In 2020, she received her Certificate of Qualification from the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. To learn more about immigrating to Canada, becoming a permanent Canadian resident or bringing your family to Canada, email Preet Gill or call her at 1-604-689-5444.

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About the Author

  • Preet Gill is delighted to be joining the Sas & Ing team as a law graduate. She first started working with Catherine Sas in 2015 as a summer intern. While working with Catherine’s team, she became invested in pursuing a career in law. Preet obtained her Bachelor of Laws with Honours from the University of Liverpool, School of Law and Social Justice in 2019. Throughout University, Preet gained valuable experience in Immigration Law as a summer student with Sas & Ing. In 2020, she received her Certificate of Qualification from the Federation of Law Societies of Canada. To learn more about immigrating to Canada, becoming a permanent Canadian resident or bringing your family to Canada, email Preet Gill or call her at 1-604-689-5444.