ONTARIO — As commodity prices surged, Ontario farmers saw an 8% rise in cash receipts — nearly $600 million — during the first six months of 2021 compared with the same January to June period of a year ago, according to the latest numbers from Statistics Canada.
Country-wide, farmers took in 12.4% more over the period. Manitoba and Alberta producers drove up that average with respective cash-receipt increases of 28.3% and 20.6%.
Ontario farms generated $8.051 billion in cash receipts in the first half of 2021 — a 21% share of the $38.23 billion farmers collected from their operations nationally.
Revenues include money from all crops, livestock, milk, eggs, as well as government program payments, including crop insurance and AgriStabilty. Dollars sent to Canadian farmers from the latter two programs were respectively down 38.1 and 21.1 percent. But Stats Canada notes that higher livestock and crop receipts “more than offset” those declines.
The Canadian rail transport system operated at near record levels carrying this country’s grain and oilseeds, as strong international demand for those products continued during the first half of 2021.
China was the largest buyer of Canadian wheat (16.8% of total wheat exported) in the first six months of 2021, and it continued to be a large buyer of Canadian grains and oilseeds as China strove to rebuild domestic hog stocks after outbreaks of African Swine Fever.
Nationally, supply-managed receipts for the first half of 2021 were $6.1 billion, an increase of 5.3% compared to the same period in 2020 — and also accounting for more than 40% of total livestock receipts.
The stats also show Ontario bucked the downward national cannabis trend. Canadian receipts for that mind-altering crop were down 10.8% ($194.8 million) while rising $90.6 million in Ontario.