Ottawa, Ontario, February 28, 2011 - Three major reports released today all point to healthy prospects for the agricultural industry. The reports give a clear snapshot of the state of the sector, portraying a highly complex, integrated and globally-competitive value chain that is an expanding and vibrant part of the Canadian economy.
"We are looking at another bumper year for farm incomes in 2010 thanks to good prices, lower input costs and initiatives such as AgriRecovery that helped Prairie farmers deal with weather disasters," said Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz. "It's encouraging to see even higher prices for grains, oilseeds and hogs."
Farm incomes in 2010 are expected to surpass the record set two years ago, with 2011 also anticipated to be a good year for Canadian farmers, according to Farm Income Forecast report released today. The 2011 Overview reports that farm incomes in 2009 were at their second highest level in two decades. The average net operating income for Canadian farms in 2010 is expected to peak to more than $50,000, a five per cent jump over 2009 and 31 per cent above the 2005-09 average.
"Our young farmers hold the seeds to future growth and we will continue to work with this dynamic group of entrepreneurs as we transition to a renewed generation of farmers," said Minister of Veterans Affairs and Minister of State (Agriculture) Jean-Pierre Blackburn, who last November launched the first National Future Farmers Network.
The Medium Term Outlook for the next 10 years points to continued high prices for grains and oilseeds leading to dynamic growth in production and exports. Prices for cattle and hogs are expected to increase slightly, offsetting higher feed costs. This will allow for moderate growth in production and exports for the livestock sector.
Both the Farm Income Forecast and the Medium Term Outlook reinforce findings in the 2011 edition of the Overview, which indicates a younger generation of farmers on the horizon. The Overview reports that farm operations that are managed solely by farmers between the ages of 18 and 39 tend to be well distributed across farm types, size and province and are likely to have higher profit margins, a higher share of on-farm family income and earn higher gross farm revenues.
The three reports produced by AAFC's Research and Analysis Directorate can be accessed online at the following links: