A Visual History of the OMAFRA-U of G Partnership

The University of Guelph and Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs have been Partners for Progress for over a century. Today, the Partnership advances Ontario's agri-food economy through research, programs and partnerships.

Pictorial timeline chart of the OMAFRA-UoG Partnership. More details can be found below the image

1874: The Provincial School of Agriculture (now OAC) established as a branch of the Ontario Department of Agriculture.


1964: The University of Guelph is established as an independent University – and creates first formal agreements with OMAFRA. Areas include:

  • Research
  • Diploma teaching
  • Technology transfer activities


1997: Landmark “Enhanced Partnership Agreement”

  • 400 OMAFRA staff and program transferred to the University
  • Formalized agreement to support:
    • Plant and animal production
    • Resources management
    • Food
    • Sustainable rural communities research
    • Routine and advanced lab services: animal health, food safety and quality, soil testing, plant diagnostics
  • AG DIPLOMA PROGRAMS: Ridgetown, Alfred and Kemptville
  • Veterinary clinical education for DVM students at Ontario Veterinary College


2002: Renewal of Agreement

  • Introduction of bioproducts research
  • Refinement of legal agreement and programs


2007: Extension of Agreement for one year to 2008


2008 to 2018: Current agreement

  • Aligning efforts to the province’s quests for:
    • Greener products
    • Hardier crops
    • Healthier livestock
    • More nutritionally beneficial foods
    • More rapid disease detection
  • Support for OMAFRA initiatives through:
    • Agri-food industry competitiveness and innovation
    • Food safety and quality
    • Environmental protection and human health