Regina, Sask. – Saskatchewan’s agri-food exports are doing well – so well in fact that the figures surpassed Ontario for the first time ever.
According to 2011 figures, Saskatchewan exceeded $10 billion in agri-food exports, which makes it the top agri-food exporting province in Canada.
The province’s top exported agri-food products included canola, canola oil and non-durum wheat.
Canola in demand
Canola continues to have a major impact on the province’s economy with canola seed overtaking non-durum wheat as the top agriculture export commodity, says the provincial ministry of agriculture.
In the last five years, canola seed exports have increased by 250 per cent from $856 million in 2007 to more than $2.1 billion in 2011.
The top five markets for Saskatchewan agriculture products are the U.S., China, Japan, Mexico and India. Since 2007, Saskatchewan agri-food exports have increased by 60 per cent, from $6 billion to $10 billion.
In terms of value, reports the LeaderPost.com, the highest growth rates for agricultural products have been in soybeans, which rose by 1,145 per cent between 2010 and 20011, going to $71 million from a small base of only $5.7 million, and canola oil, which rose to $1.6 billion from $921 million in 2010 and $481 million in 2009.
Close behind was durum wheat (at $1.6 billion, 64.5 per cent ahead of 2010) and canola meal (which was at $460 million last year, a 56.6-per-cent boost over 2010).
Non-durum wheat – long a Saskatchewan staple export – was $1.859 billion last year, only 8.5 per cent above 2010.
The LeaderPost.com goes on to report that falling export values were shown in lentils (at $835 million, about 15 per cent less than the year before) and flaxseed, exports of which were $184 million, a 27.7-per-cent fall from 2010.
But the biggest export fall was in live cattle, the value of which fell to $93 million last year, compared with $170.9 million in 2010 and $160.7 million in 2009.
The value of live swine exports, on the other hand, rose by 18.9 per cent to $18.9 million.