Fast Facts

 

 

Agriculture is a big part of Canada’s economy:

  • In 2014, Canada’s agriculture and agri-food sectors accounted for 2.3 million jobs in Canada – 1 in 8 jobs!
  • $108 billion 
  • 6.6% of the GDP

Primary agriculture contributed $55.5 billion  to the Canadian economy, but the agriculture sector faces significant labour challenges:

  • 26,400 jobs could not be filled in 2014
  • 41% of agricultural producers could not find enough workers (56% experienced production delays, 55% experienced production losses, 46% experienced lost sales)
  • Unfilled jobs cost the sector $1.5 billion in lost sales

Those labour challenges will get worse in the future:

  • Older workforce: 4X as many workers aged 65+ 
  • 1 in 4 workers retiring by 2025
  • 200,000 fewer young people entering agriculture by 2025

The labour gap is doubling every 10 years:

  • 2004: 30,100
  • 2014: 59,200
  • 2025: 114,000

The  provinces with the biggest labour gaps in 2014 were:

  • Ontario: 29,000 jobs at risk
  • British Columbia: 9,000 jobs at risk
  • Quebec: 9,000 jobs at risk

The provinces with the biggest labour gaps in 2025 will be:

  • Ontario: 47,000 jobs at risk
  • Alberta: 23,000 jobs at risk
  • Saskatchewan: 13,000 jobs at risk

The commodities with the biggest labour gaps in 2014 were:

  • Greenhouse, nursery, and floriculture: 17,000 jobs
  • Tree fruit and vine: 11,000 jobs
  • Field fruit and vegetable: 7,000 jobs

The commodities with the biggest labour gaps in 2025 will be:

  • Greenhouse, nursery, and floriculture: 27,000 jobs
  • Grain and oilseed: 17,000
  • Beef: 12,000

Top solutions to agriculture’s labour challenges include:

  • Improve access to foreign workers 
  • Attract more domestic workers 
  • Increase awareness of agricultural careers 
  • Enhance worker knowledge and skills 
  • Align training with workplace needs 
  • Improve human-resource management