Jessica Bell MPP, University–Rosedale

Government of Ontario

NDP: Spiking farm prices raise serious questions about further Ford Greenbelt grab

Published on June 5, 2023

QUEEN’S PARK - MPP Jessica Bell (University-Rosedale), NDP Housing critic, was joined by MPP Sandy Shaw (Hamilton West- Ancaster-Dundas), NDP critic for Environment, Conservation and Parks, to raise questions in Legislature today about a recent 20 per cent spike in prices for prime farmland in Southern Ontario.

A recent FCC Farmland Values Report revealed that farm prices in Ontario have increased by almost 20 per cent on average in the past year.

“These rising prices raise serious questions about the reason for this spike in prime farmland,” said Bell. “Is Ford planning to open even more of the Greenbelt for development? Wealthy land speculators are already betting that Ford will open more land, and new and young farmers can’t compete. To protect young farmers, the Conservatives should commit right now to not open any more Greenbelt land to needless development.”

Everyone is impacted by these decisions to pave over farmland – from farmers and homeowners near floodplains, to species at risk and migratory animals.  

“We already know that we have enough available land to hit our housing targets,” said Shaw. “The Environmental Defense revealed last week that Ontario has more than enough space to build over 2 million homes in areas already zoned for development. The Ford Conservatives have decided to needlessly destroy 59,000 hectares of protected Greenbelt and farmland to build expensive sprawling homes – while not building on land we already have available. Why is Ford continuing to needlessly pave over the Greenbelt, wetland, and farmland across Southern Ontario?”