What does the future of food look like?  

The University of Guelph will help answer that question and more as it takes part in the 100th anniversary of the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair – the largest fair of its kind in the world. The event takes place Nov. 4-13 under the theme “A Century of Champions.” 

The fair will encourage its 300,000 visitors to discover and learn about all that is equestrian, agricultural, culinary and educational.  

As the event’s official education and foundational partner, U of G will host the education symposium and an exhibit including the debut of a University-produced film called The Future of Food

“The University of Guelph is proud to be the educational sponsor for the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair for the fifth year in a row, particularly on the momentous occasion of its 100th anniversary,” said Dr. Malcolm Campbell, vice-president (research). 

“This year, our exhibit showcases how our exceptional researchers are meeting global issues head-on to ensure we have safe, healthy and plentiful food for generations to come.”  

The Future of Food 

The swirly logo of the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair
The entrance to a previous U of G exhibit at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair.

All aspects of U of G’s booth and presentation stem from the new film, which will premiere Nov. 4 at 4 p.m.  

In The Future of Food, faculty and graduate students from departments and colleges across the campus explain U of G’s importance to tomorrow’s food. The researchers discuss their work in subjects ranging from controlled environment agriculture and the business of food to agricultural technology. They also discuss how their research addresses impending challenges to Canada’s food supply chain, such as climate change, soil health and food security.  

Following the film, faculty and scholars from U of G’s Arrell Food Institute will hold a panel discussion. 

Expanding on those research discussions, U of G’s Royal exhibit provides an in-person experience. As visitors walk through the exhibit, they can view seeds from space, a soil monolith, 3-D-printed items, bees, yeast and more.  

Also included in the booth is information on food history including U of G’s partnership with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. The exhibit provides information on the importance of One Health (the intersection of human, animal and environmnental health) and includes resources from U of G’s Admission Services

At the Education Symposium (Nov. 10, 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.), faculty and staff from the Ontario Agricultural College (OAC) will welcome career and guidance counsellors, educators and high school students to the Growth Hub Stage, the fair’s main programming location. 

“Our series of expert speakers will explore how scientific innovations and emerging technologies in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) impact society and careers and are applied to solving real-world problems in food and farming,” said Carleigh Johnston, OAC liaison manager.  

“It’s an excellent opportunity for youth, educators and the public to explore the many exciting pathways in agriculture, food and related sectors.” 

For tickets and more information, visit the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair website


Claire Alexander, special projects manager 

Carleigh Johnston, OAC liaison manager