Opportunities And Challenges To Diversify Canada’s Food Exports: FCC Report
by Cory Knutt, Swift Current Online (Canada)
18 November 2020
Farm Credit Canada's (FCC) latest trade report says one of Canada’s greatest opportunities for growth in global trade is in the food and beverage processing industry.
“World population growth, higher purchasing power in emerging markets and new trade agreements are key factors in potentially creating more opportunities for Canada to increase exports,” said J.P. Gervais, FCC chief agricultural economist. “Combined with our competitive advantages in natural resources and innovation, and a stellar food safety reputation, Canada has an opportunity to improve its world standing as a major food exporter, as well as to diversify its export markets."
Canada ranked fifth as a global agriculture commodity exporter and 12th as a processed and prepared food and beverage exporter in 2019.
In 2019, Canada’s total food, beverage and commodity exports were worth roughly $67 billion, an increase of almost 10 per cent since 2015. Food exports increased by 27.8 per cent. Food and beverage exports represented less than half (45.5 per cent) of the total value of the country’s agriculture, food and beverage exports.
FCC says Canada’s agri-food industry has so far been able to adjust to COVID-19 challenges and meet the needs of Canadian and export customers, yet the disruptions to global food supply chains and trade caused by the pandemic underscore the need for Canada to diversify its export markets and seize related growth and diversification advantages.
The report indicates diversification of the country’s export markets can help reduce financial risks for Canadian producers by lessening our dependency on current major markets.
According to the report: