Agricultural Initiatives

The Western Fair Association is an Agricultural Society that, through its people, activities and facilities, excels in creating unique experiences that fulfill the evolving entertainment, recreational and educational interests of our customers. 

An agricultural society is a non-for-profit organization incorporated under the province’s Agricultural Societies Act. A society helps bridge the gap between rural and urban people. Its objective is to create awareness about agriculture and promote improvements in the quality of life of people living in an agricultural community. This is done in many ways including developing programs, providing facilities and holding agricultural exhibitions and events.

As a progressive AGRICULTURAL SOCIETY, the Western Fair Association supports the on-going development of the agricultural industry and promotes its value to the urban community.

Animal Welfare Statement
Animal welfare, on our site, has always been and will continue to be a top priority for Western Fair District.  The Association has deep agricultural roots and animals have been an integral part of that history helping us promote and educate on the value of agriculture to urban and rural audiences.  Animals are a respected part of the educational programming we offer through various exhibitions, and competitions.  Animals on our site are always cared for to their breed standard, and we continually consult with animal welfare professionals to benefit from their knowledge and expertise in the maintenance, health and handling of animals in our care.   
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Annual Western Fair

The annual Western Fair, which encompasses 80 acres, is one of the largest and most successful fairs in Canada attended by an average of some 200,000 people each year from the London area and well beyond. Beginning each year on the Friday following Labour Day, the 10 day event offers first class entertainment, popular midway rides and games, food, diverse exhibits, attractions, artists and animals.

The first Western Fair was hosted in 1868 and over the decades has become an integral part of the cultural and social fabric of South Western Ontario bringing together urban and rural communities and helping each understand the other. Western Fair Association strives to continually update the fair’s attractions, venues and entertainment to ensure it maintains its’ viability and vibrancy.

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The Raceway

Western Fair Raceway hosts more than 100 programs of harness racing each year. It was the first Standardbred racetrack in Ontario to provide night racing and has been offering first class harness racing now for 50 years. The track is recognized as one of the best in North America and many prominent performers in racing, both equine and human, have received their starts at Western Fair Raceway.

London and its surrounding communities represent a major hub for Standardbred horse racing and breeding in Canada. The industry provides jobs for thousands and is the third largest agricultural sector in the province. Racing at Western Fair contributes to sustaining that industry and provides significant economic spin-off benefits to the City of London and its surrounding communities.

In addition to hosting live racing, Western Fair Raceway also provides simulcast wagering on racetracks from across North America 364 days a year.

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The Market

The Market at Western Fair District is a hidden gem in the heart of London’s old east village, located in the historic Confederation Building. It operates every Saturday (8am –3pm) an Sunday (10am–2pm) throughout the year and provides residents with a place to purchase locally produced food and merchandise and the merchants a facility to sell their products.

The Market features two floors of merchants and over 100 vendors featuring fresh foods, featuring a full line of vegetables, fruits, meats, fish, baked goods, cut flowers, crafters and artisans.

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London Farm Show

As the largest indoor Farm Spring Farm Show in Eastern Canada, the London Farm Show is the place to be to see hundreds of products and services, talk with leading industry experts, and take advantage of hands-on equipment demonstrations. With two faciliates - the Agriplex and BMO Centre, there is something for everyone. 

Guest Speakers: Industry leaders will participate in panel discussions focusing on current topics relevant to today’s farmer. Panel discussions are planned for all three days of the show.

 

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Junior Beef Expo

Mission Statement: To support all 4-H members and Junior Livestock enthusiasts by offering more junior activities for them to participate in. This will keep our youth interested and active in the Agriculture industry.

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National Poultry Show

Thousands of poultry farmers, industry partners and suppliers flock to this annual event. The two-day show is a blend of trade show and professional development featuring networking opportunities, a wide array of products & services, guest presentations and informative seminars. With 57,000 square feet of exhibit space and more than 190 booths to visit, the National Poultry Show is recognized as a must-do event for anyone associated with this important agri-business in Canada.

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The Grove

The Grove at WFD is an agri-business hub where participants share resources, space, and connections to create the right conditions for innovation, and growth. One of The Grove’s main pillars is agriculture education which is achieved with the help of many partners.  The Grove has a great partnership with Growing Chefs! Ontario, as well as long-standing connections with many valued local farmers, and local and provincial commodity groups. Together, with these partners, the Grove provides unique, interactive and educational programs featuring food literacy, food chains, and good food!  

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School Tours

The Western Fair Association annually provides thousands of local school children free agriculture tours during the Western Fair, through an in-person field trip experience and now through a virtual offering. With help from our partners and local commodity organizations, the Western Fair is providing a FREE virtual package for students ages 5-18 that includes a robust virtual agri-food education offering for students and teachers to access during the school year.

Thank you to this year’s PODs (Places of Discovery): Ontario Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association, Grain Farmers of Ontario, Beef Farmers of Ontario, Dairy Farmers of Ontario, Egg Famers of Ontario, Middlesex London Food Policy Council, and Growing Chefs Ontario. Program support was also provided by Ontario Federation of Agriculture, Six by Sixteen, AgScape, and Farm & Food Care Ontario.

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Agri-Food Week

About 5 years ago, Western Fair met some amazing people at Growing Chefs! Ontario who were doing food education in a new way and liked what they saw. Western Fair District is now a major corporate sponsor of Growing Chefs! And partnered with them to help grow their School Food Education Program. Three years ago this partnership went one step further – to tell the local food story with real farmers, real animals, real food and real chefs, all in one big pavilion, and thus Agri-Food Week was born, and is now held annually each year in May.

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The Wormery

Noticing a need for compostable green waste at the District, staff began turning to alternative methods to dispose of food waste generated from our business units – and the Wormery was born. Housed on site, and featuring food scraps from the Western Fair Food & Beverage team and surrounding businesses, the wormery uses vermicomposting practices to turn waste into a natural rich fertilizer.

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