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Ag industry remains positive

Optimism among Canadian agriculture producers and agribusiness owners is at an all-time high, according to results released from the fifth annual Farm Credit Canada (FCC) National Vision panel survey last week.

Optimism among Canadian agriculture producers and agribusiness owners is at an all-time high, according to results released from the fifth annual Farm Credit Canada (FCC) National Vision panel survey last week.

Alberta was on par with the national average, which resulted in 80 per cent of respondents saying their farm or business would be better off in five years. The national average was at 76 per cent last year.

Saskatchewan producers were the most optimistic, with an overall average of 82 per cent, while the Atlantic provinces were the least, with only a 74 per cent vote of confidence.

ìThe results are great news,î said FCC president and CEO Greg Stewart. ìProducers said their optimism is driven by their expectation of profitability over the next five years, increasing global demand for food and the fact that they have either recently, or expect to, reduce their debt over the next five years.

ìAt the same time, they expressed caution due to factors beyond their control such as weather, unpredictable economic conditions and potential rising interest rates.î

More than 4,500 producers, as well as agribusiness and agri-food operators, participated in the survey last fall. Additional findings show that 58 per cent of producers plan to expand or diversify their operations within the next five years and that seven in ten producers would encourage a friend or relative to pursue a career in primary production.

In the survey, producers openly shared hundreds of positive comments about the industry, such as ëPeople need to eat, so farming will always exist,í and ëIt is a good field to work in as there are a variety of jobs within the field.í

ìFollowing a few years of economic uncertainty and challenging weather in some parts of Canada, the results demonstrate the ongoing resiliency of Canadian producers and the agriculture industry,î said Jean-Philippe Gervais, FCC Senior Agriculture Economist.

ìIn an online discussion, producers said their expected profitability stemmed from a strong position of major agriculture market drivers such as increases in farmland values, higher commodity and red meat prices, and current interest rates."

ìAgriculture is an essential industry for Canada and the world, and as industry champions, FCC has an important role to play in sharing news about the positive reality of the industry.î said Stewart.

ìThe numbers clearly show that producers are prepared to capitalize on opportunities Canadian agriculture offers the world. Optimism is just what agriculture needs to attract more people with the skills and passion to grow the industry, as well as investment dollars. This will enable continued innovation.î

Full survey results are available at www.fccvision.ca/research


Airdrie City View Staff

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