Ontario is creating a new agri-food trade advisor position to help the Canadian province's agri-food sector expand into the Chinese market. The new in-market trade advisor will based in Beijing and be a seasoned food industry professional with business experience in global markets.

As part of the 2015 Ontario Agri-Food Trade Mission to China, Canadian officials are discussing how the new advisor will help connect Ontario exporters with Chinese buyers, sales brokers, distributors, agents and importers.

China is currently Ontario's second-largest agri-food export market. In 2014 alone, Ontario's total agri-food sales to China, including exports to Hong Kong, reached $832 million. The new agri-food in-market trade advisor, to be in place by June 1, will open up even more opportunity for Ontario producers in the Chinese market by providing them with strategic advice and guidance.

The Ontario Agri-Food Trade Mission to China is part of Ontario's plan to meet the premier's Agri-Food Growth Challenge, which calls on the sector to double its rate of growth and create 120,000 new jobs by 2020. In 2014, the sector grew by 17,000 jobs and increased exports by $646 million.

"Our in-market trade advisors' intimate knowledge of the Chinese market will assist Ontario companies to access key export markets in China,” said Canadian Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and International Trade Michael Chan. “They understand the needs of their market and the trade and investment potential it holds. We will leverage this knowledge into continued economic growth."