Winnipeg | CNS – A new report from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada released Friday has pegged agriculture as contributing C$111.9 billion to Canada’s GDP in 2016, which accounted 6.7 per cent of the country’s total GDP.
The annual report entitled An Overview of the Canadian Agriculture and AgriFood System, provides a summary of the economic performance of the agriculture sector.
Over the last five years GDP in agriculture and agri-food systems has grown by 11 per cent, compared to the Canadian economy which increased by 7.8 per cent.
In 2016 there was 2.3 million people employed in the agriculture sector, representing 12.5 per cent of total Canadian employment.
Exports from the agriculture sector rose to $56 billion in 2016. On a value basis, it is estimated that last year just over one-half of the value of primary agricultural production in Canada was exported either directly or indirectly through the manufacturing sector.
The food and beverage processing industry is the largest manufacturing industry in Canada, accounting for 16.4 per cent of the total manufacturing sector’s GDP in 2016. As well it accounted for the largest share of jobs in the manufacturing sector at 17.3 per cent.
Farm market receipts remained at a record high of $57.6 billion in 2016. Between 1971 and 2016 farm market receipts have grown on average by 5.8 per cent. This has been driven by grain and oilseed receipts, which have increased by 6.5 per cent annually over the same period.
Net farm operating expenses dropped to $44.2 billion in 2016, which was a 0.9 per cent decrease from the previous year. This was the first decline in six years and was due to lower fertilizer, machinery fuel and cattle prices.
The federal government spent an estimated $5.4 billion in support of the agriculture and agri-food sector for the fiscal year of 2016-17. This accounts for 24.2 per cent of agricultural GDP. Public funding of research for agriculture was estimated to be at $557 million for the fiscal year of 2016-17.