Quinte West shares benefit of $35-million manufacturing investment 

BAY OF QUINTE — Todd Smith, MPP for Bay of Quinte, welcomed Premier Doug Ford to tour operating lines and potential expansion areas at the Quinte Custom Foods facility in Trenton Friday in celebration of a major investment by parent company Tillsonburg Custom Foods in two Ontario communities. 

Earlier that day, in St. Mary’s, it was announced the family-owned food processing company is investing $35 million to add new equipment to increase production and create a total of 78 new, good-paying jobs at their Trenton and St. Marys facilities. 

“Since 2018, we have seen more than 700,000 jobs added to Ontario thanks to companies like Tillsonburg Custom Foods,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. “Our government is proud to support local manufacturers as they expand and create more good-paying jobs. Thank you, Tillsonburg Custom Foods, for choosing Ontario.” 

Over the last two years, Tillsonburg Custom Foods has expanded beyond producing meat, frozen fruit and vegetable mixes to include sauces and pastry products. Through continued expansion, this Tillsonburg-based company is strengthening Ontario’s food supply chain, creating good-paying jobs and supporting the long-term economic resilience of communities across Ontario. This project is supported by $5 million through the province’s Regional Development Program. 

“Tillsonburg Custom Foods is proud to continue to invest locally and expand our operations to provide jobs to the local community,” said Ed Lamers, President at Tillsonburg Custom Foods. “With the support from the province of Ontario through the Regional Development Program, Tillsonburg Custom Foods will remain a leader in the nation’s food processing sector and add to our capabilities to make butter tarts, meat pies, appetizers and fully cooked products for both domestic customers and the export market.” 

Ontario is investing $140 million through its Regional Development Program to help companies across the province grow. To date, Ontario has provided more than $130 million to support over 110 projects through the program, leveraging more than $1.4 billion in new investments and helping to create more than 2,600 jobs in the province. 


  • The government launched the Regional Development Program for eastern and southwestern Ontario in November 2019. Through this program, businesses and municipalities can get financial support and guided access to a range of complementary services and supports. 
  • In 2022, the government launched the Advanced Manufacturing and Innovation Competitiveness stream of the Regional Development Program. It supports advanced manufacturers across the province, including those in the automotive, aerospace, chemical, life sciences and steel sectors, to invest in the equipment, advanced technologies and workers needed to improve competitiveness and growth. 


“This significant investment from Tillsonburg Custom Foods is further proof that Ontario is being recognized as the food processing hub of Canada. Given the increased yields Ontario farmers are achieving as well as the tremendous value our government places on our overall food and beverage manufacturing sector, we offer a compelling value proposition that is attracting investment. Our provincial Grow Ontario Strategy’s actions are making a difference, increasing demand for the good things that grow in Ontario.” 

– Lisa Thompson  
Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs 

“Our region has a long history of growing and processing food, and I’m pleased our government’s Regional Development Program is supporting owners of Tillsonburg Custom Foods to expand operations and build on that tradition by creating a sister brand, Quinte Custom Foods. They’re bringing new life to a landmark Quinte West facility and providing significant economic benefit through job creation and local supplier partnerships.” 

– Todd Smith  
Member of Provincial Parliament for Bay of Quinte