Radio Western Morning News

NEWSCAST - Wednesday, November 28th, 2018

Greg Bowman

Campus:

- Members of the Grand Theatre’s ‘The High School Project’ will gather at Western University and musically demonstrate that the louder our collective voices are, the better we are to support those in need in our community
- Western will host this special event on Friday, November 30 at 10 a.m. at London Hall in conjunction with the launch of London’s annual Business Cares Food Drive
- This is the 19th campaign for London’s Business Cares Food Drive and organizers are hoping to surpass last year’s total of 435,400 pounds (197,494.11 kilograms) of food by at least one pound. Historically, the three-week campaign has increased its donations to the London and Area Food Bank every year dating back to 2000
- The London and Area Food Bank provides emergency food items for 3,352 families monthly – 37 per cent of which are youth under the age of 17. The Food Bank has seen a 5 per cent increase in the number of seniors seeking help since last year
- As always, the annual launch event for this year’s initiative will share news about special activities planned for the 2018 campaign, as well as new partnerships and collaborations

Local:

- London is home to the largest, single food industry investment in Canada as Maple Leaf Foods unveiled its new processing plant and will have an estimated $1.2 billion annual economic impact locally
- The chicken producer made it official yesterday, announcing a $660-million investment in the city with plans to open a 1,450-job plant that will have a wide-ranging impact on the agri-food sector
- The state-of-the-art facility will be one of the most “efficient, technologically advanced” plants of its kind in the world. It is estimated 75 to 100 million birds a year will be killed and packaged at the plant, and shipped to stores. The plant will only produce packaged, fresh chicken, not cooked or prepared food
- It is estimated that nearly 86% of shoppers consume chicken at least once a week. Maple Leaf bought the land near Highway 401 and Highbury Avenue about a year ago and the deal was finalized by the previous Ontario Liberal government, but reviewed by the now-ruling Conservatives
- The biggest winners are the 1,100 chicken farmers across Ontario, many of whom are located in Southwestern Ontario.  The London plant will process about a third of the birds grown in the province
- The London plant will consolidate work done at three existing Maple Leaf plants in St. Marys, Brampton and Toronto, which will now be closing down. That consolidation will take place in the next two to three years, giving the company and United Food and Commercial Workers Union, representing workers at the three plants, time to work on a transition
- Workers at the St. Marys plant earn on average $23 an hour and have pension and benefit plans. In total, there are more than 1,600 working at the three older plants and the London plant will likely grow into more jobs than that
- There have already been talks in place about an employee union in the new London plant to get similar benefits and pension. Mayor Matt Brown, in one of his last acts as mayor —  his term ends Friday — credited LEDC and city hall’s industrial land strategy, which states the city must have about 200 hectares of serviced industrial land ready for sale to support new business, as crucial to the announcement

Sports:

- The Western hockey teams will be in some of their final action of the fall schedule this week, with the men’s team finishing off with a home and home against the Windsor Lancers on Thursday and Saturday, while the women’s team will be playing York in Toronto on Friday. The men’s team gets the first half of the home and home at Thompson Arena tomorrow night.
- The men’s team are on a three game winning streak and currently sit fifth in the OUA West, but just one point ahead of the Windsor Lancers. Thursday’s men’s hockey game can be heard LIVE right here on Radio Western, tune in at 6:50pm for the 7pm puck drop, 94.9 on the airwaves, radiowestern.ca/stream anywhere else!

Weather:

- Watch your steps out there, because there is a freezing rain warning in effect. Walking will be difficult, driving will be scary, so be sure to take the proper precautions and salt your walkways and slow down on the roads! Today will reach a high of zero with some flurries in the forecast, before going down to minus 3 overnight. Tomorrow will be a high of three degrees with a mix of sun and scattered flurries. Friday will also be a high of three, with snow in the forecast there to round out your week