Today is Canada's Agriculture Day!
It's an opportunity to celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of Canadian farmers and workers in the food industry.
Stat's Canada reports a recent infographic indicated that, in 2019, Canadian farmers produced 32.3 million tonnes of wheat, 2.17 million tonnes of pork, 1.30 million tonnes of chicken and 1.26 million tonnes of beef, as well as a wide variety of fruits, vegetables and dairy products.
The release notes fruit and vegetable acreage was down about 1.4% to 180,815 hectares in 2020.
Despite that 2020 was a relatively strong year for the production of several crops, thanks to higher seeded areas, relatively good weather and better yields.
Stats Canada reports Canadian farmers produced more wheat (+7.7%), soybeans (+3.5%), corn for grain (+1.2%), barley (+3.4%) and oats (+8.2%) in 2020, while canola production was down from 2019 (-4.5%).
Stats show that the primary agriculture sector grew by 4.5% from November 2019 to November 2020, against the backdrop of a 2.8% decline for the economy as a whole.
Agriculture accounted for 2.1% of total gross domestic product sales in November 2020 and is a strong driver of economic activity in rural areas.
In January 2021, the primary agriculture sector accounted for nearly 9% of total employment in regions considered to be rural.
The Canadian Agriculture sector has nearly 270,000 workers in agricultural industries, including 55,000 temporary foreign workers.
Stats Canada will be updating its records as 2021 is a Census year, it's an important tool as it allows the public to see a snapshot of the state of agriculture and its importance in Canada.
The previous census counted 193,492 farms in 2016 and showed that the decline in number of farms had slowed, compared with other census periods.