‘Nice alternative’: Alberta’s agri-food business to kickstart financial restoration: report


Calgary –

Whereas a lot of Alberta’s main industries slowed in the course of the pandemic, there may be one large outlier: agri-food.

A brand new report from the College of Calgary College of Public Coverage says the province’s agri-food producers will play a significant function in Alberta’s financial restoration. The report stated the province has the expertise, land and local weather to take action.

“There’s a terrific alternative to make use of these sources and actually kickstart a rising economic system again in 2021 … and into the long run,” stated Karen Spencer with U of C’s Simpson Heart for Agriculture and Meals Innovation.

Alberta’s agri-food producers generated $56 billion in 2020, up from $39 billion in crude gross sales final 12 months, the report stated.

Alberta’s largest agri-food merchandise embody cattle, canola, wheat, pork, and dairy. Greater than 40 p.c of Canada’s cattle stock is in Alberta and a few third of the nation’s canola and wheat manufacturing is on this province.

“I’ve to confess that at instances in agriculture we really feel like that forgotten stepchild. We’ve got been an integral half in constructing this province,” stated Cheri Copithorne-Barnes with CL Ranch.

She is a fourth era Alberta rancher and has seen the business develop, particularly in the course of the pandemic.

“We’re an integral a part of each grocery store we go to purchase our meals,” she stated.

“Alberta is especially positioned to have the ability to present as a lot meals as is required for this province.”

A brand new report from the College of Calgary College of Public Coverage says the province’s agri-food producers will play a significant function in Alberta’s financial restoration. The report stated the province has the expertise, land and local weather to take action.

largest employer within the province

The agri-food business is Alberta’s largest employer, with roughly 49,000 folks working in major agriculture alone. Tens of 1000’s extra folks work in agri-food-related manufacturing, processing, transportation and retail.

However there may very well be entry obstacles to labor and rural connectivity issues that might doubtlessly gradual progress, the report stated.

“The larger the farm, the extra vital it’s to have entry to their labor drive,” stated Tom Steve with the Alberta Wheat and Barley Commissions.

Nonetheless, Steve stated, the sector is displaying promise and resilience, even with a pandemic and a world financial downturn.

“It is an enormous sector. Due to the scale and scope of the oil business, I believe it is typically not absolutely appreciated. Now we’re seeing that there is a number of potential on this different business.”



Supply hyperlink