Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada – Ministerial Briefing Books
These Ministerial briefing books were prepared for the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada sworn in on March 1, 2019.
Some sections of these materials have been redacted based on the Access to Information Act.
Table of Contents
AAFC and Portfolio Leadership - Tab 1
Overview of the Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food Sector - Tab 2
To provide a high level overview of the agriculture and agri-food sector
This presentation will:
- Highlight the contribution of agriculture and agri-food to the Canadian economy;
- Provide basic facts about the structure, location and performance of Canadian primary agriculture;
- Provide a snapshot of the structure and performance of the Canadian food and beverage processing industry; and
- Explain the sector’s export orientation.
Section 1: The Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food System
The Agriculture and Agri-Food System (AAFS) is a major contributor to the Canadian economy
In 2017, the AAFS generated $116.5 billion, accounting for 6.7% of Canada’s GDP.
The AAFS’s GDP has increased annually since 2009. The food and beverage processing industry accounted for 1.8% of GDP ($30.4 billion), while primary agriculture accounted for 1.1% ($18.5 billion).
Agriculture and Agri-Food System's Contribution to Canadian GDP, 2017
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Agriculture and Agri-Food System's Contribution to Canadian GDP, 2017 2017 $
(billions of dollars)
(% of Total GDP)
Input and Service Suppliers 10,9 0,6 Primary Agriculture 18,5 1,1 Food and Beverage Processing 30,4 1,8 Food Retail and Wholesale 30,2 1,7 Foodservice 26,5 1,5 AAFS 116,5 6,7
Source: Statistics Canada and AAFC calculations.
- 1) Data are preliminary and subject to revisions.
- 2) Components may not add up due to rounding.
The AAFS also provided one in eight jobs in Canada, employing 2.3 million people in 2017.
Employment in the primary agriculture sector declined over 30% from the late 1980s until the beginning of the 2000s, with the adoption of new technologies, but the drop has been marginal since. Over the past 15 years, employment in food processing has declined marginally.
Agriculture and Agri-Food System's Contribution to Canadian Employment, 2017
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Agriculture and Agri-Food System's Contribution to Canadian Employment, 2017 People % (of Total Employment) Input and Service Suppliers 72,741 0.4 Primary Agriculture 265,700 1.4 Food and Beverage Processing 278,800 1.5 Food Retail and Wholesale 637,100 3.5 Food service 1,010,500 5.5 AAFS 2,264,841 12.3
Source: Statistics Canada and AAFC calculations.
- (1) Components may not add up due to rounding.
- (2) See glossary for the definition of employment.
Section 2: Canadian Primary Agriculture - Structure and Performance
Primary agriculture’s contribution to provincial GDP varies across Canada
Averaging a little over 1.9% across the provinces, primary agriculture as a percentage of provincial GDP ranges from a low of 0.3% in Newfoundland and Labrador to a high of 6.4% in Saskatchewan.
Contribution of Primary Agriculture to Provincial GDP, 2017
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Contribution of Primary Agriculture to Provincial GDP, 2017 Province Percent of Provincial GDP British Columbia 0.54 Alberta 1.12 Saskatchewan 6.43 Manitoba 3.52 Ontario 0.64 Quebec 1.11 New Brunswick 1.25 Nova Scotia 0.73 Prince Edward Island 3.71 Newfoundland and Labrador 0.33
Source: Statistics Canada and AAFC calculations.
Note: Data is preliminary and subject to revisions.
Canadian agriculture is diversified geographically
Some provinces are more diversified than others. For example, Ontario’s farm receipts are more evenly distributed across the different commodities than the Prairies where receipts mainly come from grains and oilseeds, and red meat.
Average farm size has doubled over the last 50 years due to consolidation and technological advances.
With 193,492 farms across the ten provinces, there are half the number of farms today than there were 50 years ago, but they are larger on average.
Number and Size of Farms in Canada, 1941 to 2016
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Number and Size of Farms in Canada, 1941 to 2016 1941 1951 1956 1961 1966 1971 1976 1981 1986 1991 1996 2001 2006 2011 2016 Number of farms
733 623 575 481 431 366 339 318 293 280 277 247 229 206 193 Average Farm Size
237 279 302 359 404 463 499 511 572 598 607 676 729 779 820
Source: Statistics Canada, Census of Agriculture
Consolidation has led to a small number of very large farms earning the majority of agricultural revenues.
The largest 8% of farms account for over half of farm cash receipts, and almost 15,000 farms had revenues of over $1 million in 2016.
Distribution of Farms and Gross Farm Receipts, Canada, 2016
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Distribution of Farms and Gross Farm Receipts, Canada, 2016 Percent of farms Percent of revenues Less than $100,000 56 5 $100,000 to $249,999 16 7 $250,000 to $499,999 11 11 $500,000 to $999,999 9 17 $1,000,000 and over 8 60
Source: Statistics Canada, Census of agriculture.
Farm market receipts are diversified across commodities, led by grains and oilseeds, red meats and dairy
- Farm market receipts reached a record high of $59.2 billion in 2017.
- Red meat and grain and oilseed commodities make up close to two-thirds of total farm market receipts.
- Agriculture in Canada has shown strong growth over the past ten years; however, there are signs of weakening in 2018.
- Farm market receipts grew by 4.9% per year, on average, between 2007 and 2017, driven by grain and oilseed receipts.
- Net cash income, an aggregate measure of income in primary agriculture, has reached historically high levels in recent years. In 2017, net cash income was $15.4 billion, the second highest on record. ██████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████████
Farm Market Receipts, 2017 (billions $)
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Farm Market Receipts, 2017 (billions $) Grains and oilseeds $22.3 Red meat $13.7 Dairy $6.6 Poultry and eggs $4.1 Fruits et vegetables $5.4 Cultures spéciales $2.7 Autres produits $4.5
Source: Statistics Canada.
- (1) “Special Crops” denotes dry peas, dry beans, lentils, chickpeas, mustard seed, canary seed, and sunflower seeds.
- (2) Numbers may not add to total due to rounding.
The average farm family is slightly better off relative to the average Canadian family
In 2015, the average farm family income was estimated at $133,783 compared to $108,000 for the average Canadian family with two persons or more.
Many farm families have both farm and off-farm income, depending, in part, on the type of farm operation.
Dairy producers reported the lowest average off-farm income. Fruit, beef, poultry and egg and oilseed and grain farms all reported high off-farm income.
Average net worth of farms has been increasing. Assets have risen at a slightly faster rate than liabilities, allowing average net worth to increase and surpass $2.8 million by 2015.
Land is a major form of collateral for farm debt and accounted for 63% of total assets in 2015. Machinery and quota account for 12% and 10% of total assets, respectively.
Average total family income, families operating a single unincorporated farm, by source of income, and farm type, Canada, 2015
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Average total family income, families operating a single unincorporated farm, by source of income, and farm type, Canada, 2015 Total off-farm income Net operating income Average total family income, all economic families Beef cattle 97,917 25,756 108,000 Dairy cattle 48,409 90,625 108,000 Fruit and tree nut 136,002 17,465 108,000 Greenhouse, nursery 92,333 27,735 108,000 Hog and pig 72,105 43,740 108,000 Oilseed and grain 98,886 47,391 108,000 Other animal 116,716 7,575 108,000 Other crop 106,859 14,857 108,000 Other vegetable and melon 76,922 24,341 108,000 Potatoes 63,996 67,588 108,000 Poultry and egg 99,910 55,596 108,000
Source: Statistics Canada
Section 3 : Canadian Food and Beverage Processing Structure and Performance
The food and beverage processing (FBP) industry is a key component of the Canadian agriculture and agri-food system
About 42% of primary agriculture products produced in Canada are used as raw material inputs by the food processing industry, which had sales of $112.6 billion in 2017.
Canadian Food and Beverage Processing Sales and Exports, 1995 to 2017
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Canadian Food and Beverage Processing Sales and Exports, 1995 to 2017 Year FBP Sales (billions $) FPB Exports (billions $) 1995 51.98296 7.226091 1996 55.18556 8.508295 1997 57.85771 9.888912 1998 59.40229 10.95006 1999 63.28441 11.55245 2000 65.85684 12.52886 2001 70.20385 14.4071 2002 72.97703 14.83215 2003 75.94508 14.58392 2004 77.45381 16.09896 2005 77.19572 15.61535 2006 80.86283 14.93835 2007 81.11847 15.37833 2008 85.81505 17.44542 2009 90.11249 16.49542 2010 91.60969 17.70726 2011 93.95511 20.1013 2012 94.57115 21.31111 2013 96.59846 21.86723 2014 100.1426 24.01603 2015 102.5655 26.73572 2016 108.5167 28.63958 2017 112.5635 29.82331
Source: Statistics Canada, AAFC calculations
The Canadian FBP industry is:
- The number 1 market for Canadian primary agriculture products
- The number 1 contributor to manufacturing GDP
- The number 1 employer in the manufacturing sector
FBP plants are primarily located in Ontario and Quebec
Ontario and Quebec accounted for almost 60% of the total value of food processing shipments in 2017.
In all provinces, meat processing is among the top three of the food and beverage processing sub-industries in terms of revenue from goods manufactured.
Section 4 : Agriculture and Agri-Food Markets
The performance of the agriculture and agri-food sector depends on its ability to compete in both domestic and international markets
Approximately half of the value of primary agriculture production in Canada is exported, as either primary commodities or processed food and beverage products.
- Canada is the world's fifth largest exporter of agriculture and agri-food products (3.4% of total world export value in 2017).
- In 2017, Canada's export sales grew 3.0% to reach $57.7 billion.
- Some sectors are more export-oriented than others. From 2015 to 2017, an average of 82% of the volume of canola and canola products were exported while 50% of the volume of cattle and beef products were exported.
- In 2017, the U.S. accounted for 52.1% of all Canadian agriculture and agri-food exports, followed by China (12.2%), and Japan, the EU and Mexico combined for 15.7% of Canadian exports.
- Exports of Canadian agriculture and agri-food products to China grew at an annual rate of 21.2% between 2007 and 2017.
- The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership countries and the EU are growing destinations for Canadian agriculture and agri-food exports.
Dairy, poultry and egg working groups - Tab 4
Updated February 1, 2019
The Government announced newly formed working groups for the dairy, poultry and egg industries. How will these working groups support the interests of these industries and Canada’s supply management system?
- When the new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) was signed, this Government committed to creating working groups that would facilitate discussions between stakeholders and government officials.
- The working groups will develop strategies to fully and fairly support farmers and processors to help them adjust to CUSMA and the CPTPP.
- These working groups will also help chart a path forward to help supply-managed industries innovate, grow and remain sustainable and resilient for future generations.
- Supporting supply management, now and in the future, is a collaborative effort.
Responses on supply-managed industries
- On supply management:
- The Government stands strongly behind the dairy, poultry and egg industries and has defended Canada’s supply management system despite strong U.S. attempts to dismantle it.
- On dairy:
- There will be two working groups for the dairy industry.
- The first will study the short-term impacts of CUSMA and the CPTPP.
- The second will chart a path forward to help the dairy sector innovate and remain strong for future generations.
- On poultry and eggs:
- A working group was created for the poultry and egg industries. It will study the short- and long-term objectives of these industries.
- On timing:
- The groups have worked intensively in recent weeks.
- The Dairy Mitigation Working Group has outlined its perspective and the types of programming it would like to see.
- The Poultry and Eggs Working Group is currently completing its analyses and will present its results shortly.
- On the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA):
- On August 1, 2017, the Government announced two programs: the Dairy Farm Investment Program ($250 million over five years) and the Dairy Processing Investment Fund ($100 million over four years). These programs will help dairy farmers and processors adapt to the market changes resulting from the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) between Canada and the European Union.
- The Dairy Farm Investment Program is helping farmers invest in productivity-enhancing technologies such as robotic milkers, automated feeding systems and better herd management tools. The Dairy Processing Investment Fund is helping dairy processors modernize their operations, improving productivity and competitiveness.
Background: CUSMA and the CPTPP
The Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) and Canada’s agriculture sector
On September 30, 2018, Canada, the United States and Mexico announced the completion of negotiations toward a new Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA). The agreement was signed on November 30, 2018. In addition, on December 30, 2018, the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) took effect for the first six ratifying countries: Canada, Australia, Japan, Mexico, New Zealand and Singapore.
The supply management system
The Government has maintained the three pillars of Canada's supply management system for dairy, poultry and eggs—production control, pricing mechanisms and import control—despite strong U.S. attempts to dismantle them.
Under CUSMA, Canada has agreed to grant additional market access to the U.S. for specific quantities of dairy products (expressed in metric tonnes). CUSMA also grants market access to the U.S. for chicken, eggs and turkey products.
Canada's market access for dairy in CUSMA is estimated at approximately 3.59% of Canadian production. Total market access to foreign competitors for dairy under all trade commitments, including CUSMA, is estimated at approximately 10% of Canada's production. Canadian farmers will continue to supply the vast majority of the Canadian market. Since market access is granted in terms of specific volumes, as the demand for dairy products rises in Canada, our Canadian farmers' dairy production will also rise to meet this market growth.
Canada has negotiated reciprocal access to the U.S. dairy market, including tonne-for-tonne access for most dairy products.
Canada and the U.S. have both agreed to tariff elimination for whey in 10 years. Canada has also agreed to ensure the elimination of current milk classes 6 and 7 within six months following the entry into force of CUSMA and to establish an export charge on skim milk powder, milk protein concentrates and infant formula if exports exceed certain thresholds.
The Government has committed to fully and fairly supporting farmers and processors in supply-managed industries for loss of market share.
The Government has created new working groups comprising representatives from supply-managed industries. These working groups—two with dairy farmers and processors and one with poultry and egg farmers and processors—will develop strategies to ensure that Canada maintains its robust dairy, poultry and egg industries, now and into the future.
The structure of the working groups is informed by consultations with the Dairy Farmers of Canada and the Dairy Processors Association of Canada, and comprises two components:
- The Dairy Mitigation Working Group collaborated on the development of mitigation strategies to fully and fairly support farmers and processors to help them adjust to CUSMA. It also discussed support to reflect the impact of the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP).
- The Dairy Strategic Working Group will chart a path forward to help the dairy sector innovate and remain an important source of jobs and economic growth for future generations.
The Poultry and Egg Working Group is tasked with developing strategies to fully and fairly support farmers and processors in those industries to help them adjust to the CPTPP and CUSMA, while taking into consideration the long-term viability of the sector.
The federal government has consulted the provincial and territorial governments since the beginning of the process and will continue to do so.
Who makes up the working groups?
- Representatives from national and regional industry organizations and associations, with industry delegates to be determined in consultation with the industries themselves
- Academic leaders and industry and financial experts may also support the working groups, as necessary
- AAFC representatives
Since when have these working groups been up and running?
The first official Dairy Mitigation Working Group meeting was held on December 14, 2018, and three additional meetings took place on January 11, 24, and 29, 2019.
The Poultry and Egg Working Group met on December 19, 2018, and February 1, 2019, and engaged in a conference call on January 24. Additional meetings have been agreed to, with anticipated completion by early spring.
What were the results of these working groups?
Various impact analyses were presented to the working group. The complexity of the agreements, the different analytical approaches used and the number of years of adjustment for the CPTPP and CUSMA are being considered. We are still working through many of these considerations.
The Dairy Mitigation Working Group also had discussions with officials from AAFC's Programs Branch concerning an update on program implementation, administrative issues and program impact on producers and processors. Additionally, processors indicated that the ability to import goods through acquiring tariff rate quota was of interest and Global Affairs Canada was invited to discuss these concerns.
The Dairy Mitigation Working Group is wrapping up, although there is a request from the industry to continue to work on export thresholds and the elimination of class 7 once more details are known. The industry has outlined its perspective and the types of programming it would like to see.
What are the next steps for the Dairy Strategic Working Group?
The Dairy Strategic Working Group is tasked with developing a vision to ensure that the dairy industry is well-positioned in the sustainable economy of the future and that it is attuned to emerging needs. This group is just getting under way. The Department is working with industry leaders to develop a work plan for this group.
On May 2, 2016, the Government of Canada announced its intention to move forward with a plan to help the dairy industry adjust to CETA and met with the dairy industry to obtain its views on program and investment options to help the industry adapt to the new market conditions that will be created by CETA.
On November 10, 2016, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food announced two new investment programs for the dairy sector:
- The Dairy Farm Investment Program provides up to $250 million over five years in targeted contributions to help Canadian dairy farmers update farm technologies and systems and improve efficiency and productivity through upgrades to their equipment. This could include the adoption of robotic milkers, automated feeding systems and herd management tools.
- The Dairy Processing Investment Fund provides up to $100 million over four years to help dairy processors modernize their operations and, in turn, improve efficiency and productivity and diversify their products to pursue new market opportunities.
Following the announcement, government officials launched a second round of consultations with dairy stakeholders to seek input on program design details.
Stakeholder consultations concluded in December 2016 and AAFC officials developed these programs based on feedback from a range of dairy stakeholders across Canada.
The programs were launched on August 1, 2017. The processing program started accepting project summaries immediately, while the application process for the farm program started on August 22, 2017.
A food policy for Canada - Tab 5
Updated March 1, 2019
What is the planned scope and direction of the Government's food policy?
- A Food Policy for Canada will set a long-term vision for an integrated Canadian food system and reflect four themes:
- increasing access to safe, nutritious and culturally appropriate food;
- supporting food’s contribution to human health;
- promoting environmental sustainability, resilience, and conservation; and
- building a strong agriculture and food sector.
Responsive on delay
- Food policy is complex and broad in scope.
- It touches on the mandates of several federal organizations, some of which have developed or are developing complementary initiatives.
- Following the extensive consultations on food policy in 2017, we have been reviewing the significant amount of input received, along with identifying priorities and options to address those priorities.
- We want to ensure we take the time to get it right.
Responsive on food policy consultations
- The Government of Canada held extensive food policy consultations. We heard from almost 45,000 Canadians through our online survey.
- We also heard from hundreds of stakeholders through our national and regional engagement sessions and community events.
- I personally heard the views of Canadians in a Town Hall that I hosted in August 2017.
- During these consultations, Canadians told us a number of issues matter to them, including:
- increasing food security;
- enhancing food literacy;
- tackling food fraud;
- reducing food waste;
- conserving water, soil and air quality;
- promoting sector growth, including increasing exports; and
- establishing a food policy advisory body.
- We issued a “What We Heard,” report on the consultations on September 5, 2018.
Responsive on food security
- The majority of Canadians have sufficient access to nutritious and safe food.
- That said, more can be done to improve access to food, especially among those most at risk of experiencing food insecurity – such as children, Indigenous peoples, Canadians living in poverty, and people in isolated northern areas. Food security received considerable attention during the food policy consultations.
- We are exploring how the Food Policy could contribute to increasing access to food.
Responsive on relationship with healthy eating strategy
- Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is working with Health Canada to ensure the Food Policy supports the objectives of the Healthy Eating Strategy and Canada’s new Food Guide, by improving food environments and to make the healthier choice the easier choice for all Canadians.
- The Strategy is expected to contribute to the food policy objective of improving health and food safety, by promoting safe and nutritious food choices and increasing food literacy.
Responsive on reducing food loss and waste
- Reducing food loss and waste has the potential to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, increase food security, save consumers money, and improve the efficiency of the agriculture and food sector.
- Governments, consumers and the agriculture and food industry can all play a role in reducing food loss and waste.
- Reduction of food loss and waste was among the topics discussed during the food policy consultations, and the Government is considering how it can be addressed in the Policy.
The mandate letter for the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food includes a directive to “develop a food policy that promotes healthy living and safe food by putting more healthy, high-quality food, produced by Canadian ranchers and farmers, on the tables of families across the country.” The October 2017 mandate letter for the Minister of Health asks her to work with the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food to align new regulatory initiatives with the Food Policy.
A whole-of-government approach is being adopted for the Food Policy, with several federal government departments and agencies participating in its development. It is expected that other departments will play a significant role in food policy implementation through existing initiatives such as the Healthy Eating Strategy and the Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table, along with new or expanded initiatives. A launch date for the Food Policy has not yet been determined.
Food policy consultations took place between May and October 2017. Input was received in many ways, including:
- An online survey, open from May 29 to August 31, 2017, with about 45,000 respondents.
- A food summit in Ottawa in June 2017. This event gathered feedback from approximately 290 participants.
- Six regional consultation events in August and September 2017. These events ensured that the Government heard perspectives from about 350 participants across the country, recognizing that food issues vary from region to region.
- 29 local consultation events led by Members of Parliament.
- 28 events held across Canada by civil society organizations, organized by Food Secure Canada and supported by the Government.
- More than 100 written submissions.
- Self-led engagement by national Indigenous organizations, supported by the Government.
The consultations indicated, among other findings, significant interest in the following: increasing food security by addressing poverty; recognition of a “right to food”; establishing school nutrition programs; reduction of food loss and waste; development of local and regional food systems; support for new entrants to farming and fishing; addressing the distinctive concerns of Indigenous communities; improvements to the quality and availability of data on food-related topics; and the creation of an effective food policy advisory body.
On September 5, 2018, AAFC released a 'What We Heard' report summarizing the feedback gathered during the consultation and engagement process for A Food Policy for Canada. This feedback will help inform the ongoing development of the food policy.
A broad range of stakeholders – including farming, food industry, civil society, and philanthropic organizations, as well as academic experts – have jointly called on the government to establish A National Food Policy Council for Canada. This council would include broad representation of external organizations and would provide advice, monitoring and stakeholder support for the Food Policy.
The Government is currently giving consideration to how to address the wide interest in establishing an ongoing external food policy advisory body.
Between June and October 2017, the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food (SCAAF) held a series of hearings on food policy with invited witnesses. In December 2017, SCAAF presented a report with 21 recommendations. On March 29, 2018, the Government tabled the response to the committee's report.
- A Food Policy for Canada will set a long-term vision for an integrated Canadian food system and reflect four themes:
The Canadian Agricultural Partnership - Tab 6
Updated September 17, 2018
What are the investments under the new Canadian Agricultural Partnership?
- The Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Partnership) came into effect on April 1, 2018. This $3-billion commitment with the provinces and territories is charting the course for government investments in the agriculture and agri-food sector for the next five years.
- Included in the $3 billion is a $1-billion investment from the Federal Government for programs and activities that focus on growing trade, supporting innovation, and encouraging diversity in the sector.
- The remaining $2-billion investment is for cost-shared programming by federal, provincial, territorial governments to address key priority areas, including science, research and innovation; environmental sustainability and climate change; markets and trade; and public trust.
Responsive: regarding cost-shared programming
- AAFC has worked collaboratively with the provinces and territories to ensure cost-shared programming supports national objectives and enhances the growth of the sector.
- Provinces and territories have the flexibility to design and deliver programming that addresses regional needs while advancing shared Partnership priorities.
- Provinces and territories are launching and promoting cost-shared programming under the Partnership.
Responsive: regarding business risk management
- Federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture agreed to make several changes to business risk management programs to better respond to the needs of producers.
- We agreed to make the AgriStability program fairer, for example, by guaranteeing participants at least 70 percent of their reference margin and allowing them late entry when circumstances permit.
- Under the Partnership, federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture also committed to engaging in a review of business risk management programs. An external panel of experts presented recommendations to federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture in July 2018.
- As a first step to respond to the recommendations, we have launched a call for applications under the AgriRisk Initiatives program, seeking industry-led proposals to develop alternative risk management tools to complement the existing business risk management suite and provide flexibility for producers.
- We are also committed to working closely with the sector to identify longer-term solutions that meet the needs of producers, while remaining cost neutral.
Responsive: regarding the current global trade environment and calls for assistance
- The Government of Canada will continue to work with other orders of government, industry and stakeholders to closely monitor the international trade environment and its impacts on Canadian farmers and industries. We are in close contact with stakeholders and stand firmly with them. We have a robust set of programs in place to help farmers in times of volatility and uncertainty.
- Our suite of business risk management programs averages over $1.5-billion in annual support to help producers manage the risks that threaten the viability of their farms and are beyond their capacity to manage. The core programs, AgriStability and AgriInvest, cover losses due to revenue decline or falling prices.
- AgriInvest accounts are also available at any time to assist farmers in managing income decline and cash flow.
On July 21, 2017, federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture reached agreement on key elements of a new agricultural policy framework. The Canadian Agricultural Partnership took effect on April 1, 2018, when the previous framework expired.
The new Partnership includes a five-year, $3-billion investment to strengthen the agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector, ensuring continued innovation, growth and prosperity. In addition, producers will continue to have access to a robust suite of business risk management programs.
The Partnership's $2 billion in cost-shared funding with provinces and territories focuses on six priority areas:
- Science, Research and Innovation – Helping industry adopt practices to improve resiliency and productivity through research and innovation in key areas.
- Markets and Trade – Opening new markets and helping farmers and food processors improve their competitiveness through skills development, improved export capacity, underpinned by a strong and efficient regulatory system.
- Environmental Sustainability and Climate Change – Building sector capacity to mitigate agricultural greenhouse gas emissions, protect the environment and adapt to climate change by enhancing sustainable growth, while increasing production.
- Value-added Agriculture and Agri-food Processing – Supporting the continued growth of the value-added agriculture and agri-food processing sector.
- Public Trust – Building a firm foundation for public trust in the sector through improved assurance systems in food safety and plant and animal health, stronger traceability and effective regulations.
- Risk Management – Enabling proactive and effective risk management, mitigation and adaptation to facilitate a resilient sector by working to ensure programs are comprehensive, responsive and accessible.
Negotiations have been finalized with all provinces and territories for the $2 billion of cost-shared programming. Provinces and territories are launching and promoting their respective cost-shared programming under the Partnership.
The Government has launched six initiatives of just over $1 billion of federal investment under the Partnership.
A five-year, up to $121-million federal initiative to help the industry increase and diversify exports to international markets and seize market opportunities. The program supports industry-led promotional activities that differentiate Canadian products and producers, and leverage Canada's reputation for high-quality and safe food.
The AgriMarketing program offers funding through two components:
- AgriMarketing Program: National Industry Association – Funding provided will assist industry associations address a market access issue, develop a new market, or expand or maintain an existing market.
- AgriMarketing Program: Small and medium-sized enterprises – Funding provided will assist for-profit organizations expand into international markets.
A five-year, up to $20.5-million program to assist industry-led efforts to provide producers with information needed to build capacity and support the sector's development as well as activities to raise agricultural awareness.
A five-year, up to $338-million initiative to support leading-edge discovery and applied science and innovation driven by industry research priorities. Designed to accelerate the pace of innovation, the program supports pre-commercialization activities and invests in cutting edge research to benefit the agriculture and agri-food sector.
The AgriScience program offers funding through two components:
- AgriScience Program – Clusters (no longer open for applications): Funding provided supports industry-led and commodity-specific science and research projects that address priority themes and horizontal issues, and coordinate research activities across Canada, including environment and climate change issues.
- AgriScience Program – Projects: Funding provided supports specific shorter-term science projects to help industry overcome challenges and address fiscal barriers experienced by small and emerging sectors.
A five-year, up to $128 million initiative to accelerate the demonstration, commercialization, and/or adoption of innovative agri-based products, technologies, processes or services that increase agri-sector competitiveness and sustainability.
A new five-year, up to $5 million initiative to help under-represented groups in Canadian agriculture, including youth, women, Indigenous Peoples, and persons with disabilities, to fully participate in the sector.
A five-year, up to $74-million federal initiative to foster public trust by helping industry develop and adopt systems, standards and tools that enable them to make credible, meaningful and verifiable claims about the health and safety of Canadian agricultural and agri-food products, and the manner in which they are produced.
The AgriAssurance program offers funding through two components:
- AgriAssurance Program (National Industry Association): Funding provided will assist industry associations develop assurance systems, standards or tools such as food safety, animal and plant health surveillance, animal welfare, environmental sustainability, traceability, etc.
- AgriAssurance Program (Small and medium-sized enterprises): Funding provided will assist for-profit organizations obtain third-party certification when it is required to meet an export opportunity.
Business Risk Management Programs
Federal, provincial and territorial agreement on the business risk management suite of programs for the Partnership included the following program changes: reducing the impact of the Reference Margin Limit in AgriStability to ensure a more equitable level of support for producers, and establishing a late participation mechanism that provincial and territorial governments can trigger to allow producers to enter AgriStability late in situations where there is a significant income decline and gap in program participation.
In order to make AgriStability more equitable for producers, federal, provincial and territorial governments needed to make additional program changes. These changes included reducing the maximum annual government contributions to AgriInvest from $15,000 to $10,000, and establishing a minimum payment for both AgriInvest and AgriStability of $250. Governments sought to minimize the impact on producers when considering these changes while maintaining business risk management objectives.
As part of the agreement on the Partnership in July 2017, federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture also agreed to a review of business risk management programs to evaluate their effectiveness and impact on innovation and growth and to develop cost-neutral options to improve the suite of programs. An external panel, composed of producers, academics, industry and international experts, was established to provide advice on all aspects of the review and bring forward recommendations on cost-neutral program improvements.
The External Panel presented its recommendations to federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture at their July 2018 meeting in Vancouver. The recommendations identified the need for work in a number of areas, including:
- developing management tools to cover risks not targeted by the business risk management suite;
- addressing challenges with AgriStability, including complexity, timeliness and predictability;
- examining approaches to improve program equity;
- maintaining AgriInvest;
- modernizing AgriInsurance premium setting; and,
- improving risk management communication and education.
As a first step to respond to the panel's recommendations, a call for applications has been launched under the AgriRisk Initiatives program. The call seeks industry-led proposals to develop alternative risk management tools to complement the core business risk management suite. Federal, provincial and territorial Ministers of Agriculture also agreed to continue to work in the following areas: examining broader business risk management program issues within the current suite; improving education on risk management; and maintaining ongoing engagement with industry.
Overview of federal/provincial/territorial structure and priorities - Tab 7
Agriculture is a constitutionally-mandated concurrent jurisdiction in Canada with both levels of government playing a role in regulating and supporting the industry. This jurisdictional overlap has led to the evolution of several federal-provincial mechanisms to manage the relationship between the federal government and 13 separate provincial and territorial governments. These range from informal engagement, formalized meetings among officials and regular meetings of Deputies and Ministers; to joint policy and program development, cost-sharing of funded programs and collaborative delivery strategies for programs and communications.
Given the jurisdictional overlap, building provincial-territorial consensus, cooperation, and commitment on key initiatives is essential in moving the agricultural agenda forward. The FPT relationship in recent years has been respectful and collaborative, and has been the catalyst for joint programming with provinces and territories to help the sector maximize its long-term profitability and competitiveness. A new multilateral framework agreement, the Canadian Agricultural Partnership was implemented April 1, 2018. The Partnership is a five-year, $3 billion investment by federal, provincial and territorial governments to strengthen the agriculture and agri-food sector.
FPT Ministers meet at least annually as a group, and bilaterally on a regular basis. The next Annual Conference, which will be co-chaired by the Ministers from AAFC and Quebec, is July 17-19 in Quebec City. The agenda is expected to be focused on priorities identified by Ministers at their July 2018 annual conference. These include
- Moving forward on the results of the Business Risk Management (BRM) analysis, with particular focus on options to address the timeliness, complexity and predictability of AgriStability.
- Advancing the regulatory forward agenda that includes
- reducing overlap and duplication;
- creating regulatory pathways to speed review and approval of innovation;
- enhancing collaboration on regulatory issues outside the current mandate of the FPT agricultural table; and,
- developing a path forward for emergency preparedness in animal health.
- Addressing labour issues negatively impacting primary producers and the processing sector.
In addition, trade and market access developments, particularly the impact of recently agreed trade agreements on the supply managed sector, and implementation of recommendations by the Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table will continue to be FPT priorities.
CUSMA – Agriculture and agri-food focus / dairy - Tab 8
Updated March 1, 2019
CUSMA – Issues affecting the agriculture and agri-food / dairy sector
How will the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) impact the agriculture and agri-food sector?
- Our negotiators worked hard to advance Canadian agricultural interests at the table.
- The CUSMA will preserve the existing agriculture commitments between Canada, the U.S., and Mexico.
- The agreement achieved important outcomes for our sector, including obligations for agricultural biotechnology, new market access and improved mechanisms to work together to discuss agricultural trade issues.
How does the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) impact Canada’s dairy, poultry and egg sectors?
- Overall, this is a good deal for Canada and the Canadian economy, but it required some difficult decisions.
- The CUSMA preserves and maintains the supply management system. It provides for some additional market access, similar to that provided under the CETA and CPTPP. The future of supply management is not in question.
- Canada's dairy farmers, their families and their communities can count on the full support of our Government.
Responsive: transparency obligations for dairy sector
- Canada has agreed to text in the CUSMA that requires both Canada and the U.S. to publish, notify, and consult on various aspects of milk class pricing.
- Transparency provisions are a standard feature in free trade agreements and do not interfere with Canada's ability to amend its milk classes as it sees fit.
Responsive: wheat grading
- The CUSMA will require amendments to the Canada Grain Act to allow U.S. grown wheat that is registered in Canada to be able to receive an official Canadian grain grade.
Responsive: Canada’s wine and spirits industry
- The Agreement contains provisions that reduce and streamline labeling requirements for wine and distilled spirits that will help reduce costs for Canadian exporters.
- The CUSMA maintains commitments that recognize the unique system Canada has for the sale of these products.
On November 30, 2018, the Prime Minister, President of the United States, and President of Mexico signed the Canada–United States–Mexico Agreement (CUSMA).
The CUSMA includes a number of positive outcomes for Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector, including, among other things,
- preservation of existing market access
- incremental market access, including for refined sugar and margarine
- better rules of origin for margarine
- new obligations affecting agricultural biotechnology
- a new sanitary and phytosanitary measure chapter; and
- a modernized Committee on Agricultural Trade.
As part of the balance of concessions, Canada agreed, among other things, to
- provide incremental market access to the U.S. for dairy, poultry, and egg products
- ensure the elimination of current milk classes 6 and 7
- establish an export charge on skim milk powder, milk protein concentrate, and infant formula if exports exceed certain thresholds; and
- allow U.S. grown wheat of varieties registered in Canada to receive an official Canadian grain grade.
Now that the Agreement is signed, each party will proceed with domestic procedures to obtain authority to ratify the Agreement. For Canada, this includes tabling the Agreement in Parliament for a waiting period of 21 sitting days, followed by the introduction of implementing legislation. The Government of Canada would subsequently need to obtain legal authority from the Governor-in-Council to ratify the CUSMA. Once all three countries have notified of their readiness to implement the Agreement, the Agreement would enter into force "on the first day of the third month following the last notification."
Canada and the U.S. benefit from highly integrated supply chains with bilateral agriculture trade totalling $63 billion CAD in 2017. The U.S. had a trade surplus of $1.9 billion CAD in agricultural products in 2017. In addition, both countries work collaboratively on issues of mutual interest such as regulatory cooperation, science and technology cooperation, third country market access, and promotion of science-based international standards.
Canada and Mexico enjoy a productive bilateral agricultural trade relationship and have highly integrated markets. Canada was Mexico's third-largest export market for agri-food and seafood products in 2017 while Mexico was Canada's fourth-largest export market. Overall, bilateral agricultural trade between Mexico and Canada is balanced, reaching $4.6 billion CAD in 2017. Mexico enjoyed an agricultural and seafood trade surplus of $738 million CAD in 2017.
Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table - Tab 9
Updated January 9, 2019
How will the Government respond to the final report of the Economic Strategy Tables to better support the agri-food sector?
- I thank the members of the Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table for their hard work in the development of this report.
- The recommendations offer a long-term vision for governments and industry to work together to ensure the agri-food sector can continue to be a driver of Canada's economic growth.
- Through the Fall Economic Statement, the Government has taken concrete steps to address the recommendations in the report. The recommendations will continue to inform the work and actions of this Government.
- The Fall Economic Statement announced measures to support a more agile regulatory system, including strengthening the Government's capacity to incorporate economic and competitiveness considerations when designing and implementing regulations and the launch of a Centre for Regulatory Innovation.
- The Fall Economic Statement outlined an ambitious tax competitiveness strategy, recognized the importance of infrastructure funding, and invested an additional $800 million in the Strategic Innovation Fund to support innovation across the country and in all sectors.
- The Government also outlined a comprehensive Export Diversification Strategy, with additional funds for Trade Commissioners and specific funding to support international rules-based trade in agri-food.
Budget 2017 announced six Economic Strategy Tables to support innovation in potential high-growth sectors: advanced manufacturing, agri-food, clean technology, digital industries, health/bio-sciences, and resources of the future.
Tables were tasked with identifying opportunities to build on Canada's competitive advantages, identifying obstacles to growth and articulating a long-term strategic action plan with ambitious growth targets.
The Agri-Food Economic Strategy Table consists of 15 members representing the diverse perspectives of the agri-food sector, from primary agriculture production to food processing to fish, seafood and aquaculture. Table members include leaders from various agri-food subsectors across Canada and were selected by the Chair, Murad Al-Katib, President and CEO of AGT Food and Ingredients.
The final report of the Economic Strategy Tables, which includes a chapter from each of the six tables and an overarching “chapeau chapter”, was released by Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada (ISED) on September 24, 2018.
The chapeau chapter outlines six cross-table recommendations. These “Signature Initiatives” reflect common themes (e.g., regulatory modernization and labour) and are supported by all six of the Economic Strategy Tables.
The Agri-Food Table's chapter includes 18 recommendations, including: increasing efforts to advance science-based trade in international standard setting bodies; advancing a strong and coordinated brand for Canadian agri-food products at home and abroad; and developing and implementing priority market strategies.
On November 21, 2018, the Minister of Finance tabled the Fall Economic Statement, which focuses on the themes of continued progress for the middle class, building a Canadian investment advantage with targeted business tax enhancements, and confidence in Canada's economic future.
A number of tax measures were also announced (including accelerated capital cost allowance) that will support Canadian agriculture and agri-food businesses' investments in buildings, machinery, and equipment and drive business growth. The Agri-Food table supported significant investments in physical infrastructure and data. To this end, funding under the National Trade Corridors Fund will be accelerated with a continuous call for proposals. The Government is also investing an additional $13.6M over three years to improve transportation data, which will support the efficient movement of agricultural products. Finally, an additional $800 million will be invested through the Strategic Innovation Fund to support innovation across the country and in all sectors.
AAFC is receiving $12 million over 5 years to support accessing new markets for our products. Details are being confirmed, but the funds are likely to support our participation at the International Standard Setting Bodies as well as increasing Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's trade commissioner presence in key markets.
Government of Canada is continuing to review the recommendations in the final report and identify opportunities to act, understanding that Industry has a key role in putting its efforts towards working to achieve the vision outlined by the Table.
Agriculture and the environment - Tab 10
Updated March 1, 2019
What is the Government of Canada doing to minimize the agricultural sector’s impact on the environment?
- Canadian farmers are responsible stewards of the land.
- The agriculture sector has a solid track record of innovating and adopting new technologies to improve environmental performance and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
- The $3-billion Canadian Agricultural Partnership between federal, provincial and territorial governments will help producers continue to take action to address soil and water conservation, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change.
- The Government is investing in science and innovation to develop solutions that will help the sector grow sustainably and create better opportunities for farmers, businesses and Canadians.
What is Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada doing to promote environmental sustainability?
- Under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, up to $690 million is available, including under the AgriInnovate and AgriScience programs, to enhance the competitiveness of the sector through research, science and innovation, with an emphasis on sustainable and clean growth.
- The Canadian Agricultural Strategic Priorities Program is a five-year, $50.3-million investment to help the sector address emerging issues with environmental sustainability being one of the four priority areas.
- The Agricultural Clean Technology Program is a three-year $25-million investment helping Canadian farmers reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the development and adoption of clean technologies focused on bioproducts and precision agriculture.
- In Budget 2017, the Government committed $70 million to further support agricultural discoveries in science and innovation. This includes hiring scientific staff, and funding for collaborative research with external and federal partners. Research will focus on emerging priorities, such as climate change and soil and water conservation.
- The federal-provincial-territorial Canadian Agricultural Partnership supports producers in assessing on-farm environmental risks and taking actions to reduce them.
Responsive regarding greenhouse gas emissions reductions
- AAFC has a long history of supporting sector efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in areas like soil health, carbon sequestration, clean technologies, and value-added bio-products.
- Emissions from agriculture have been relatively stable over the last 10 years, even as the sector has grown.
- The $27-million federal Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program, a partnership with universities and conservation groups across Canada, supports 20 research projects into greenhouse gas mitigation practices and technologies that can be adopted on the farm:
- For example, the Program invested $1.1 million in a University of Lethbridge-led study on whether biochar, a feed supplement, could improve beef cattle digestion and reduce their methane gas production.
Responsive regarding the impact of carbon pricing on farmers:
- Carbon pricing is an important part of Canada's plan to transition to a cleaner and more innovative economy that reduces emissions and protects our environment. Farmers can be part of that transition.
- Our Government recognizes that farmers and farm families are important drivers of the Canadian economy. The federal carbon pricing system has been designed to limit its impact on the agriculture sector and reflect the realities of Canada's agricultural industry.
- The federal carbon pricing system includes relief provisions for gasoline and diesel fuel used by farmers for agricultural activities. In October, our Government also proposed a relief for natural gas and propane used by commercial greenhouse operators.
- Greenhouse gas emissions from livestock and crop production are not included in carbon pricing systems.
- In some provinces, there are opportunities for producers to earn revenue from selling carbon offset credits generated through the adoption of practices such as conservation tillage and precision agriculture techniques.
Responsive on adapting to climate change
- The agriculture sector has a solid track record of innovating and adopting new technologies to adapt and build resilience to the impacts of climate change.
- Through BRM programs, FPT governments provide tools and funding to help the sector prepare for, respond to and recover from climate-related risks like extreme weather.
- Federal investments in climate-related decision support tools are helping the sector better prepare for new opportunities and risks from changing growing conditions.
- For example, AAFC's National Agroclimate, Geomatics and Earth Observation Service provides a wide variety of agroclimate information for use by producers to monitor drought risks.
There are specific commitments related to agriculture and environmental issues in the Minister's mandate letter:
- work with provinces, territories and other willing partners, to help the sector adjust to climate change and better address water and soil conservation and development issues;
- support the Ministers of Natural Resources and Environment and Climate Change in making investments that will make our resource sectors world leaders in the use and development of clean and sustainable technology and processes; and,
- invest in agricultural research to support discovery science and innovation in the sector.
The Canadian Agricultural Partnership (Partnership), launched on April 1, 2018, is a five-year $3-billion investment that will strengthen the agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector, ensuring continued innovation, growth and prosperity. This includes $1-billion in federal programs and activities and $2-billion in cost-shared funding programs and activities by federal, provincial, and territorial governments.
Innovative and sustainable growth is one of three focus areas of federal Partnership programming. Up to $690-million is available under the federal-only programs, including the AgriInnovate ($128 million) and AgriScience ($338 million) programs, and AAFC-led foundational science ($224 million), to enhance the competitiveness of the sector through research, science and innovation, with an emphasis on sustainable and clean growth.
Within the $2-billion cost-shared programs and activities, an estimated allocation of up to $436 million has been made available to address environmental sustainability and climate change issues.
In Budget 2017, the Government announced $70 million in funding over 5 years, starting in 2018–19, to further support agriculture discovery science and innovation, with a focus on addressing emerging priorities, such as climate change and soil and water conservation. Part of this investment ($44 million) will be used to hire and equip around 75 scientists in emerging fields of agricultural research. It will also support collaborative research projects including within the innovative Living Laboratory Initiative ($10 million) where farmers and scientists co-develop new farming practices and technologies on working farms. This will result in Canadian farmers adopting practical technologies and sustainable farming practices more quickly. The remaining $16 million will fund collaborative federal research projects focused on priority areas affecting the agriculture sector, such as environmental issues. With these funds, researchers will have the support, for example, to find better nutrient management solutions to ensure the health of our waterways.
The Canadian Agricultural Strategic Priorities Program (CASPP) is an investment of $50.3 million over five years to help the sector's ability to address emerging issues and capitalize on opportunities. The CASPP focuses on four priority areas: adoption of new technology; environmetal sustainability; strategic development and capacity building; and, emerging issues. Examples of potential projects could include those addressing artificial intelligence technology, bio-crops, and environmentally sustainable farming techniques.
The Agricultural Clean Technology Program is part of the Government of Canada's suite of clean technology programs and initiatives announced in Budget 2017. This $25-million, three-year investment will help the agriculture sector reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by targeting developments in bioproducts and precision agriculture. Bioproducts are renewable products from agricultural waste and outputs. Precision agriculture is a farming practice that uses data gathering technologies to guide targeted farm management actions that improve sustainability, efficiency and productivity of agricultural operations.
From 2010 to 2015, AAFC provided $25 million over 5 years to fund the Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program. This program was renewed in 2016 for an additional $27M over 5 years (2016 to 2021). The program is no longer accepting applications. The objective of the Program is to enhance the understanding and adoption of agricultural technologies and practices that can be used by farmers to reduce GHGs.
Canada's agriculture emissions represent 10% of Canada's GHG emissions. Agriculture emissions have remained relatively stable for more than a decade and are not projected to significantly increase to 2030.
Canadian producers have made great progress in reducing GHG emissions by improving production efficiency and increasing agricultural soil carbon. For example, through improved feeding and breeding, GHG emissions declined by 15% per kilogram of beef over the past 30 years. For over 20 years, Canadian farmers, particularly in the Prairies, have increasingly substituted conventional tillage with no-till or conservation tillage seeding techniques. These practices, combined with a major reduction in summer fallow (i.e., cropland purposefully kept out of production) and an increase in perennial forage crops, have resulted in agricultural soils in Canada being a significant carbon sink since 2000.
Adapting to climate change
Weather has always been a key factor that producers integrate into their daily and longer-term management decisions. However, climate change is making this challenge even greater. FPT governments recognize this challenge and the importance of helping producers avoid – or quickly recover from – the extraordinary costs associated with extreme weather events such as droughts and floods. For example, AgriRecovery can help producers with these unforeseen, extraordinary costs.
In addition, the Government, in partnership with provinces and territories, is taking action through the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change (PCF), building resilience to the impacts of climate change, and enabling clean growth and jobs through investments in technology, innovation, and infrastructure. The Partnership is the primary mechanism to help the agriculture sector contribute to the goals of the PCF and identifies Innovative and Sustainable Growth in the Sector as one of three priorities.
AAFC has developed a scientific research strategy to enhance sustainable agricultural production and is working to better understand the impacts of a changing climate and develop innovative technologies to enable adaptation to it (e.g., more resilient crop varieties and animal breeds, more efficient irrigation systems, models to predict climate impact on important pests and diseases).
Establishing a national price on carbon is a key federal commitment under the Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change. The Federal Government has implemented a carbon pricing legislation (backstop) effective January 1, 2019, in provinces and territories that choose to adopt it or that do not have a carbon pricing system that meets the federal stringency requirements and carbon price benchmark of $20/tonne in 2019 rising to $50/tonne in 2022.
Currently, carbon pricing systems are in place in British Columbia, Alberta and Quebec. The Yukon and Nunavut have invited the Federal Government to implement carbon pricing in their territories.
Since New Brunswick, Ontario, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan are proposing approaches that do not meet federal stringency requirements, the federal carbon pollution pricing system has been applied in these provinces as of January 1, 2019.
ECCC and Finance Canada lead the development of federal carbon pricing legislation. The backstop is composed of two key elements: a carbon levy applied to fossil fuels; and an output-based pricing system for industrial facilities that emit above 50,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent annually. The details of this system are still being developed, with regulations targeted to be in place by spring 2019.
Under Part 1 of the Greenhouse Gas Pollution Pricing Act, a fuel charge will be in place in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, New Brunswick and Ontario starting April 1, 2019, and in the Yukon and Nunavut starting July 1, 2019. Under Part 2 of the Act, ECCC will administer an output-based pricing system for large industrial emitters in Ontario, New Brunswick, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island and Saskatchewan starting January 1, 2019, and in the Yukon and Nunavut starting July 1, 2019.
Impact on agriculture producers: The magnitude of the carbon price impact will depend on specific provincial policy designs, including exemptions and rebates. Relief from the carbon levy for gasoline and diesel used in eligible farming activities, and partial relief for greenhouse growers are included in the proposed federal backstop, as well as in British Columbia and Alberta. AAFC's work to date indicates that carbon pricing, including the proposed federal backstop, is expected to have modest impact on most farmers' net operating expenses and incomes.
Agri report on adapting to climate change
Between November 7, 2017, and February 7, 2018, the Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food (AGRI) held a series of hearings on climate change adaptation and water and soil conservation issues with invited witnesses.
On May 30, 2018, AGRI released a report with 19 recommendations. The recommendations address a wide variety of issues related to improving understanding of the challenges and opportunities faced by the agriculture sector with respect to climate change, soil and water conservation and approaches to address these issues.
A Government Response to the Committee's Report was tabled in the House of Commons on September 27, 2018. The Response supports all 19 of the Committee's recommendations. The Government Response highlights existing initiatives the federal government is undertaking in the priority areas identified in the Committee's Report. The Response is the product of a collaborative effort among many federal departments and agencies.
Agfo report on impacts of climate change and carbon pricing
Starting in March 2018, the Senate Standing Committee on Agriculture and Forestry (AGFO) went on fact-finding missions in Vancouver, Calgary, Halifax and Montreal, in addition to holding a series of hearing on the impacts of climate change and carbon pricing on agriculture, agri-food and forestry.
On December 11, 2018, AGFO released a report with 16 recommendations. Broadly, these recommendations address issues concerning measures to support adaptation and resilience to climate change and approaches to reduce the impact of carbon pricing on the competitiveness of the agriculture, agri-food and forestry sectors.
Temporary foreign workers - Tab 11
Updated March 1, 2019
What is AAFC doing to help improve the agriculture and agri-food processing sector’s access to temporary foreign workers?
- Reliable access to labour is critical to the ongoing success of Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector.
- Temporary foreign workers are an important part of the sector's labour force.
- Employment and Social Development Canada and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada have conducted a review of the primary agriculture sector in Canada's Temporary Foreign Worker Program.
- My federal colleagues and I have met directly with stakeholders to ensure the sector's concerns are understood as recommendations for program changes are developed.
- The ‘what we heard' report summarizes the key findings of these consultations and research studies undertaken as part of the review.
- Officials will continue to engage stakeholders as we develop and eventually implement important updates to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program to better meet the needs of agriculture workers and employers.
Responsive on biometrics expansion
- Expanding the collection and verification of biometrics to more applicants will strengthen immigration and border screening processes.
- Our government is working to ensure the timely arrival of agricultural workers for the 2019 season.
- Measures have been implemented to help mitigate the impacts of the biometrics expansion, including the expansion of the capacity of Visa Application Centre in Mexico.
- AAFC is working collaboratively with Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada and Employment and Social Development Canada, and is closely monitoring the situation.
Responsive on increased unannounced inspections
- Our government is committed to supporting the agriculture and agri-food sector and its role in growing the economy.
- Temporary foreign workers are an important part of the sector's labour force and our government takes their protection very seriously.
- The vast majority of employers take migrant worker protection very seriously. We are working with industry to ensure workers are protected, while also limiting the impact of inspections on operations.
Responsive on seasonal agricultural worker protections:
- The Government takes the protection of seasonal agricultural workers seriously and works very closely with participating countries, employers and stakeholders to ensure that foreign workers are afforded the same rights as Canadians while in Canada.
Responsive on Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada labour-related programming
- Our government has committed to improving workers' access to job training and increasing opportunities for younger workers.
- Our government helps agricultural employers meet their human resource needs through programs such as the Career Focus Program, which supports the creation of agricultural internships.
Reliable access to workers through the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program is a key concern for some agriculture and processing employers.
The TFW Program aims to assist employers in filling their temporary, skills and labour requirements when qualified Canadians and permanent residents are not available. The TFW Program is jointly administered by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
In 2017, TFWs accounted for 17.2% of the primary agriculture workforce (up from 15.4% in 2016) and 0.9% of the food and beverage manufacturing sector. TFWs are common in horticulture and meat and seafood processing subsectors; and in Ontario, Quebec and New Brunswick. Most TFWs in the agriculture and agri-food processing sector are hired in low-skilled/low-wage occupations such as general farm workers, industrial butchers and fish plant workers.
In June 2014, the previous federal government announced reforms to the TFW Program that increase the cost of hiring a TFW and reduce access to low-wage TFWs for some employers (employers who meet ESDC's primary agricultural sector criteria are exempt from most of these reforms). The main impacts of reforms are being reported by the processing sector, in particular the meat, vegetable, and seafood industries.
On September 19, 2016, the Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities (HUMA), released a report on the TFW Program with 21 recommendations. On January 30, 2017, the Government tabled its official response underlining early actions already taken by the Government, e.g. eliminating the four-year cumulative duration rule and maintaining the cap on the proportion of low-wage TFWs at 20%. The response also indicated the Government's plans to announce further details on changes to the TFW Program in Budget 2017.
In Budget 2017, the Government announced its intention to improve the TFW Program and the International Mobility Program, the two programs that govern the entry of TFWs into Canada. Budget 2017 also proposed an investment of $279.8 million over five years, starting in 2017-18, and $49.8 million per year thereafter, to support the continued delivery of these programs.
Primary agriculture review
As part of the Path Forward Plan for the TFW Program, announced on April 10, 2017, the Government indicated that it would be undertaking a multi-stakeholder review to modernize the administration of the TFW Program’s primary agriculture streams. ESDC in collaboration with AAFC is exploring issues such as the cause of labour shortages, the use of the National Commodities List, housing deductions, and inconsistent housing standards.
ESDC is currently reviewing stakeholder input and has committed to validate the Review’s findings with key stakeholders before recommendations to the Parliamentary Secretary/Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour are finalized.
Budget 2018 included $15 million over three years in support of expanded unannounced on-site inspections for high-risk TFW Program employers, including primary agriculture employers. Agriculture stakeholders, such as the Canadian Horticultural Council (CHC), have indicated that they support inspections; however, they are concerned that ESDC’s inspection authorities, including the ability to access an employer’s computer during an inspection, are “too far reaching.” Stakeholders have also expressed concerns about biosecurity risks (spreading disease and pests) if inspectors arrive unannounced and do not adhere to established protocols. AAFC has been working in collaboration with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency and Service Canada to mitigate biosecurity risks and ensure guidelines and protocols are followed by inspectors as part of unannounced inspections.
2019 season biometric requirements
As of December 31, 2018, all persons applying for temporary (e.g. visitor visa, study or work permit) or permanent residence are required to provide biometric information (a photograph and fingerprints) to obtain entry into Canada. This includes foreign workers seeking seasonal or year-round employment in agriculture and agri-food related occupations.
Biometrics must be provided in person. Some stakeholders have raised concerns that biometric services may not be widely available within Mexico where many TFWs are recruited (e.g. there is only one Visa Application Centre office in Mexico). In addition, some smaller Caribbean countries do not have Visa Application Centres. This would require some TFWs to travel to a different city or country to enrol their biometrics. Stakeholders have signalled that IRCC's expanded biometric requirement could pose challenges for agricultural employers and delay workers from arriving on time, due to the additional step of enrolling their biometrics. TFWs who already have biometrics on file, as is the case with some countries (e.g. Jamaica), or who submit their work permit application before December 31, 2018, (depending on nationality), will not be required to submit biometrics for the 2019 season.
IRCC is undertaking a number of actions to help mitigate the impacts of the biometrics expansion, including, in Mexico, expanding weekday hours and adding weekend hours in the Visa Application Centre to provide additional time to process TFW enrolment. IRCC is also working with ESDC and Service Canada to support the timely arrival of workers by accepting LMIA applications earlier than normal for primary agriculture employers needing workers in early 2019. This will allow more workers to apply for a work permit in 2018 before biometrics are required.
IRCC has been using regular meetings with agricultural stakeholders, and provinces and territories to ensure a clear understanding of the new biometrics processes for the 2019 season. The Service Delivery Working Group, led by ESDC and the Canadian Federation of Agriculture, is receiving regular updates from IRCC (the working group is a forum for industry to raise TFW Program service delivery issues and explore potential solutions). AAFC is supporting the outreach process through alignment with ESDC and IRCC communications, as well as ensuring that provinces and territories are informed of developments.
Canadian Federation of Agriculture Roundtable on Temporary Foreign Workers
On May 3, 2018, the Canadian Federation of Agriculture hosted a roundtable in Ottawa, with industry stakeholders and officials from AAFC, ESDC and IRCC to discuss the agriculture sector’s concerns regarding TFW Program processing and integrity challenges. All participants agreed that increased transparency and improved communications related to Program requirements would help employers avoid unnecessary setbacks in the application process, thus improving compliance rates and reducing processing times. The roundtable also resulted in the creation of an industry/government working group which will discuss short and long-term TFW Program service delivery issues and potential solutions.
What We Heard report on the Primary Agriculture Review
The Primary Agriculture Review: What We Heard Report was prepared by Employment and Social Development Canada in consultation with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, to summarize the input received through stakeholder consultations that took place in the spring and summer of 2018 as well as information collected through a labour market study, and a housing study as part of a broader review of the Primary Agriculture Stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.
Four themes were discussed in the consultations: Program Eligibility and Structure, Wages and Deductions, Housing, and the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) Process.
Program Eligibility and Structure: Stakeholders would like the Program to allow a wider range of agricultural employers to access the Primary Agriculture Stream of the Program. They would also like to see the requirements simplified and more streamlined.
Wages and Deductions: Stakeholders expressed a desire for greater flexibility for employers to offer raises and bonuses, for wage determination be more transparent, and for allowable deductions to reflect the costs to employers.
Housing: Stakeholders were concerned that the variation of housing standards across the country could pose a risk to workers. There was a recognition that creating a national standard for housing provided to foreign agricultural workers would involve jurisdictional challenges and impose costs on employers.
LMIA Process: Employers would like to see improvements to service delivery such as faster LMIA processing and improved communications and client services. Employers were supportive of creating a “recognized employer model” to reduce administrative requirements and LMIA processing times for returning employers who have a strong record of compliance. Employers were not supportive of implementing an LMIA fee.
Value creation for Canada’s cereals sector - Tab 12
New: January 14, 2019
Why is the Government of Canada consulting with the cereals and grain sector on two proposed value creation models that would place limits on farmers’ ability to save seed?
- The cereal and grain sector has long recognized investment gaps in cereals breeding and has been discussing the concept of value creation for over a decade.
- In November 2017, the Grains Roundtable, a group that represents all players in the value chain, asked the Government to consult with cereal and grain growers on two proposed models for enhancing sector profitability and competitiveness.
- To date, we have heard a diversity of views in our consultations. No decisions on funding models or implementation have been made. We are continuing the consultation process as requested by industry.
Responsive regarding impact of proposed models on farmers
- The Government is listening to farmers and welcomes their feedback as options for enhancing the profitability of the cereal sector are explored.
- No matter which, if any, model is implemented, farmers will continue to have the ability to save, store, condition and re-use seed for their own use.
- Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue to partner with industry and producer organizations to carry out research and the development of competitive cereal varieties.
In 2015, the Agricultural Growth Act received royal assent which included amendments to Canada's Plant Breeders' Rights Act (PBRA) to bring it into alignment with the 1991 Convention of the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV'91). The Act also included regulation-making authority so that additional financial incentives, such as end point royalties, may be implemented in Canada. While this authority exists, it is generally agreed that the Canadian cereal value chain must work together to recommend a model for implementation.
In 2016, the Grains Roundtable (GRT) recognized that more consideration should be devoted to engaging the cereals sector in a dialogue on developing a value creation model for funding cereals research and variety development. A GRT Working Group on Value Creation was formed that included producer associations from all regions of the country, wheat and barley commissions, seed companies, public and private sector cereal variety developers and government representatives.
In March and April 2017, the Working Group held face-to-face engagement sessions in Saskatchewan, Alberta and Ontario to build awareness on the topic, and to gauge cereal stakeholders' interest in a new model. The second round of the engagement process (including consultation on potential models for value creation) progressed into the summer and fall of 2017. After a final meeting in fall 2017, the working group provided a recommendation to the Grains Roundtable on two potential models for value creation.
Following this industry-led stakeholder engagement process, the Grains Roundtable requested that the government consult on the following two models for value creation in Canada's cereal's sector:
- producer-facilitated end point royalty collection;
- royalty collection enabled by production contracts to place conditions on the use of farm saved seed.
AAFC and the CFIA launched consultations with a series of in-person engagement sessions held in Winnipeg, Ottawa, Saskatoon, Edmonton and Charlottetown starting in November 2018. A session is planned to occur in Quebec in April 2019. Sessions to date were attended by approximately 500 stakeholders from across the crop production value chain, including producers, provincial wheat and barley commissions, other commodity organizations, provincial governments, seed growers, grain handlers, public and private breeders and seed companies. In addition to the in-person sessions, AAFC and CFIA officials also travelled across Canada to engage more than 1,500 producers and other cereal sector stakeholders at farm meetings, agricultural trade shows and other events.
These consultations and informal engagement efforts have revealed a diversity of views and an expressed desire for additional analysis of the proposed models, consideration of other options, and for more consultation with individual producers. This sentiment was echoed in a letter received from Western Canadian cereal commissions in January 2019 – including the barley, oat and wheat commissions from Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
Consultation with producers will continue online and through additional face-to-face meetings, as needed, in late winter and early spring.
Quebec Summer 2018 Drought and Forage Producers - Tab 13
New: February 25, 2019
Why is the Government refusing to approve a change under AgriInsurance that would allow forage producers in Quebec to be compensated to their 2018 losses?
- The Government of Canada worked with the Province of Quebec and found an AgriInsurance solution that works for producers.
- Canada, the provinces and territories deliver a robust suite of programs to help producers manage severe risks that threaten the viability of their farm and are beyond their capacity to manage.
- For the 2016 program year, federal and provincial governments provided over $1.8 billion in support to producers, of which the federal government's share is 60%.
Supplementary Response if Pressed on the Methodology Change Requested
- With continuous collaboration between the Government of Canada and the Province of Quebec, a positive solution for the producers, that complies with the program requirements has been be identified.
The AgriInsurance program helps producers experiencing production declines caused by natural hazards.
For yield based plans, coverage is based on historical production and production shortfall is compensated. For weather derivative plans that are not based on yield, like the Quebec Forage Plan, the actual production is not taken into account in the compensation.
Provinces work collaboratively with industry groups to develop and design insurance plans, under the program to meet the needs of their producers.
Farm Income Protection Act (FIPA) requires the premiums levied under the AgriInsurance program (program refers to all crops insured and the entire insurance fund) be sufficient to allow the program to be self-sustaining.
- Self-sustainability means the AgriInsurance program has the capacity after a deficit to return to a positive balance over a certain period of time.
The Canada Production Insurance Regulations (Regulations) require the submission of an opinion, signed by an actuary, to confirm that the premium rate for each plan (plan refers to crop specific insurance) is actuarially sound.
- Actuarial soundness means the plan premiums are sufficient to cover for all expected costs.
La Financière agricole du Québec (FADQ) is the administrator for crop insurance (AgriInsurance) in Quebec. The FADQ implemented in 2016 a new forage insurance program.
The Government of Canada and the ministère de l'Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation du Québec (MAPAQ) worked together to find a solution for the producers impacted by the 2018 drought and maintain the credibility of the AgriInsurance Program.
The Quebec Forage plan can be considered as a “rain/frost insurance” program. It compensates for losses estimated from low(high) rainfall or frost, and not actual production loss.
Quebec's initial request was to retroactively down weight several days of rainfall to generate more compensation for producers. AAFC has no legal authority to approve the request.
The solution reached will increase the forage replacement value to better reflect actual forage replacement values observed in 2018.
The solution is a non-plan change, and AAFC has the legal authority to approve and La Financière will submit an actuarial opinion.
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the FADQ are also working together in order to provide a more flexible program to face extreme weather conditions that meets the requirements of the Regulations for 2019.
Withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union - Tab 14
Canada is conducting bilateral discussions with the United Kingdom as well as discussions at the World Trade Organization (WTO) with the United Kingdom and the European Union (EU), with a view to minimizing the impact of the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the EU (“Brexit”) on Canada’s trade.
The United Kingdom invoked Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union on March 29, 2017, initiating a two-year period for negotiating the terms of the United Kingdom's exit from the EU. In November 2018, the United Kingdom and the EU concluded the negotiation of a withdrawal agreement to guide their relationship after Brexit, which will take place on March 30, 2019. That agreement would have enabled Canada to maintain preferential access to the United Kingdom market under the terms of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), which governs trade between Canada and the EU. The United Kingdom's Cabinet and the EU leaders approved the withdrawal agreement, but the United Kingdom's Parliament later overwhelmingly rejected that approval in a significant vote.
Brexit is scheduled for the end of the month, so withdrawal without an agreement (a “no-deal Brexit”) is possible. Given the increasing likelihood of that possibility, if CETA cannot be renewed between Canada and the United Kingdom, the only way for Canada to maintain preferential access to the United Kingdom market would be through a bilateral transition agreement that reproduces the bulk of the preferential terms in CETA, including those for Canadian agricultural exports. The United Kingdom does not have the authority to negotiate its own bilateral agreements while still in the EU, so the agreement must be as close to CETA as possible.
The United Kingdom is a member of the WTO and will continue to be a member after Brexit. The United Kingdom's withdrawal from the EU will have an impact on the EU's schedule of commitments (document outlining a WTO member's market-access commitments), and the United Kingdom will have to prepare a new schedule. Both schedules are subject to negotiation with all WTO members, which will have to accept the schedules before they can be implemented. To that end, the EU and the United Kingdom have each circulated a proposed schedule of commitments in which the EU-28 tariff rate quotas are split between EU-27 and the United Kingdom. The proposed changes will have a negative impact on Canadian pork and beef exporters. Splitting quotas would reduce quota volumes to quantities that are not economically viable (for example, 1 tonne for pork and 19 tonnes for beef). It is unlikely that an agreement on the schedules of commitments can be reached with all WTO members before March 30, 2019. If no agreement is reached, we expect that the United Kingdom and the EU will implement their new schedules of commitments on an interim basis, while continuing negotiations with WTO members.
Market access objectives
It is in Canada's interest to maintain its trade relationship with the United Kingdom, which is a key ally on trade and agriculture. Talks with the United Kingdom are still ongoing but have not finished. In the context of a possible bilateral transition agreement and future commitments from the United Kingdom at the WTO, Canada is aiming to ensure that the volumes of all tariff rate quotas are large enough for exports to this market to continue.
From a practical perspective, the International Affairs Branch, a joint organization of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, is in contact with its counterparts at the United Kingdom's Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs with the goal of ensuring a seamless transition and the continuation of discussions after Brexit, including the recognition of organic equivalency standards and the revision of sanitary and phytosanitary certificates for animals and animal products, plants and plant products, fish and seafood, and food.
African Swine Fever (ASF) - Tab 15
Memorandum to the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
This memorandum is intended to give you an overview of African swine fever and the measures taken to prevent its spread in Canada.
- African swine fever (ASF) is a highly contagious viral disease of domestic and wild pigs. It causes high death rates in infected pigs and can infect swine herds in various ways. There is no treatment or vaccine for ASF.
- ASF does not affect human health.
- ASF has never been found in Canada.
- An outbreak in Canada would have a significant economic impact on the country and the Canadian pork industry.
- The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is working with its federal partners, the industry and the provinces to make sure that ASF is not spread in Canada.
- ASF is a serious viral disease of pigs that can cause fever, internal bleeding and high death rates. It is highly contagious and can spread rapidly through both direct and indirect contact with infected pigs, pig products, equipment, clothing, vehicles, contaminated feed, etc.
- ASF does not affect human health.
- ASF is routinely found in several African countries. Since 2007, the disease has spread across several countries in central Asia, including China for the first time in 2018, as well as several European countries.
- ASF has never been found in Canada.
- In Canada, ASF is a reportable disease under the Health of Animals Act, and all cases must be reported to the CFIA.
- To prevent the introduction of swine diseases of concern, including ASF, into the country, Canada has had rigorous import restrictions in place for live swine, and swine related products and by-products for some time.
- The pork industry contributes 103,000 direct and indirect jobs that, in turn, generate $23.8 billion when farms, inputs, processing and pork exports are included. In 2017, over 1.2 million tonnes of pork, valued at $4 billion, was exported to over 100 countries. This represents 70% of Canada's pork production.
Position of the Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food
- The Department shares the sector's concerns about ASF. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC), the CFIA and industry partners are collaborating closely on all ASF-related activities. In addition, the CFIA is taking action to raise public awareness of ASF and of the risk vectors by which it could be introduced into Canada.
- Senior officials at AAFC are currently discussing business continuity issues (support for industry) with Canada's pork sector. We understand that major decisions will have to be made quickly by stakeholders in the value chain (including farmers and processors) if ASF is found in Canada. AAFC representatives are currently discussing the facts and various hypotheses in order to predict the impact of an outbreak on the sector, as well as contingency plans to ensure business continuity.
- The CFIA is closely monitoring the situation worldwide and has adopted a proactive approach based on collaboration in order to prevent the introduction of ASF in Canada. We have begun an additional planning and preparation process by creating a nation-wide intervention team. The team is dedicated to maintaining adequate response capability in labs and on the ground.
- Controls on imports are the most important factor in mitigating the risk of ASF in Canada.
- The CFIA and the CBSA are working together to target high-risk travellers returning from the regions affected, and have reallocated detection dogs, the most effective means of detecting undeclared goods, in the main international airports. They are also considering imposing the maximum monetary penalties on those transporting prohibited items, and looking for additional funding to enhance the current detector dog program.
- The CFIA intends to take measures to ensure that no feed ingredients from countries infected with ASF enter Canada if they are infected. An additional information note will be provided, describing the feed ingredient control mechanism and the application of conditions governing imports.
- The CFIA, has already communicated with and raised awareness among 14 million travellers through social media. Airport signage indicates the need to declare all products of animal origin and food products at customs in order to prevent foreign animal diseases from entering the country.
- The CFIA fully supports the use of control areas in accordance with World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines, since this is an effective way of controlling disease and regaining access to the market of part of a country before the entire country is considered open. We collaborate closely with our main international partners, including the United States and the European Union, when it comes to approaches to control areas under agreement.
- The CFIA, in collaboration with the U.S. government, the industry and provincial authorities, is planning a forum on ASF, to be held in Ottawa on April 30 and May 1, 2019. A roadmap will be developed to work with governments, the industry and international organizations in order to prevent ASF and prepare to face the threat of an outbreak.
- The CFIA is closely monitoring the international situation to ensure effective border controls. For example, since the disease is spreading to other regions of the world, the CFIA is taking immediate action to verify the control measures in place for pork and pork products originating from these regions.
African Swine Fever - Economic impact
African Swine Fever poses a significant risk to the Canadian pork industry and the Canadian economy
A World Supplier of Pork
Canada is the third-largest pork exporting country in both value and volume and represents about 20% of world pork trade.
Canadian Pork in World Demand
In 2017, over 1.2 million tonnes of pork, valued at $4 billion, was exported to over 100 countries.
Top Three Markets for Canadian Pork
- United States
Canadian Pork - an Economic Engine
The pork industry contributes 103,000 direct and indirect jobs that, in turn, generate $23.8 billion when farms, inputs, processing and pork exports are included.
Everyone has a role to Play in Reducing the Risk of ASF
- On-farm biosecurity is key to helping prevent diseases from developing and spreading.
- Careful sourcing of animals, products and by-products, including feed and feed ingredients is important.
- If you have been abroad and visited a farm or have come in contact with any wild animals, you should wait 14 days to visit any farm in Canada.
Departmental Priorities - Tab 16
As of April 1, 2018
To drive innovation and ingenuity to build a world leading agricultural and food economy for the benefit of all Canadians.
To provide leadership in the growth and development of a competitive, innovative and sustainable Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector.
Support the sector in taking advantage of opportunities in domestic and international markets.
Advance science and innovation to increase knowledge and strengthen the sector’s competitive advantages.
Help producers anticipate, mitigate, and respond to sector risk in a manner that supports sustainable growth.
- Support trade initiatives, including the modernization of the North American Free Trade Agreement
- Support the sector in taking advantage of trade opportunities in Asia and Europe
- Bolster our scientific capacity in new and developing areas, including to address agri-environmental challenges
- Complete a review of Business Risk Management programs
- Deliver the Canadian Agricultural Partnership with an emphasis on results
- Lead the development of A Food Policy for Canada
- Encourage greater participation of women, Indigenous communities, and youth in agriculture
- Foster an inclusive, respectful, healthy, and harassment-free workplace
- Take further action to support employees dealing with pay issues
- Enhance client service delivery and support open government
Provide internal services that enable program delivery and corporate functions.
Departmental Plan - Tab 17
Communication with Provincial and Territorial Ministers
Under the Constitution of Canada, the federal and provincial governments have concurrent jurisdiction over agriculture. As Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, you will therefore be communicating regularly with your provincial and territorial partners, who play a key role in Canada's agricultural sector.
We suggest that you schedule calls in the near future with your provincial and territorial partners. This will give you an opportunity to make sure that the current close collaboration will continue, in particular on the eve of the next Federal, Provincial and Territorial Ministers of Agriculture Annual Conference to be held in Quebec City from July 17 to 19.
The provincial/territorial co-chair for the FPT Ministers' Table changes annually. This year's co-chair is Quebec. We recommend that Minister André Lamontagne be one of the first people you call.
Ontario, Saskatchewan, Alberta and Manitoba are also key stakeholders in the FPT agricultural relationship. Ontario will be co-chair in 2019-2020.
You will find the list of provincial and territorial ministers and their contact information on the next page.
FPT Ministers Contact Details
- British Columbia
- Lana Popham
250-387-1023 (Lisa Johnson)
- Lana Popham
- Oneil Carlier
- Oneil Carlier
- David Marit
306-787-0338 (Shelley Duke)
- David Marit
- Ralph Eichler
- Ralph Eichler
- Ernie Hardeman
- Ernie Hardeman
- André Lamontagne
- André Lamontagne
- New Brunswick
- Ross Wetmore
- Ross Wetmore
- Nova Scotia
- Keith Colwell
- Keith Colwell
- Prince Edward Island
- Robert Henderson
902-368-4830 (Susan Morrison)
- Robert Henderson
- Newfoundland and Labrador
- Gerry Byrne
- Gerry Byrne
- Northwest Territories
- Wally Schumann
867-767-9141 (ext 11138)
- Wally Schumann
- Ranj Pillai
- Ranj Pillai
- David Akeeagok
867-975-5075 (Susie Alainga)
- David Akeeagok
Portfolio Coordination - Tab 19
Deputy Minister’s Office – Corporate Secretariat
The Minister and the Portfolio
- The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food is responsible for all organizations in the Agriculture and Agri-food Portfolio, including:
- Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
- Canadian Dairy Commission
- Canadian Grain Commission
- Farm Credit Canada
- Farm Products Council of Canada
- Canada Agricultural Review Tribunal
- Although the Canadian Food Inspection Agency is no longer part of the Portfolio, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food continues to be responsible for its non-food safety activities, including economic and trade issues, consumer protection, as well as its animal health and plant protection work.
- The organizations are varied, reflecting a range of organizational models needed to deliver differing policy objectives, and have varying relationships with the Minister.
- The Portfolio is virtually unique for a Federal Portfolio in that all organizations serve most of the same stakeholders and have overlapping mandates and responsibilities.
Agriculture and Agri-Food Portfolio Organizations
- Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada:
- provides leadership in the growth and development of a competitive, innovative and sustainable Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector.
- Canadian Dairy Commission:
- oversees pricing, policy coordination and marketing for the Canadian dairy sector.
- Canadian Grain Commission:
- regulates Canada's grain handling industry and is also a leader in grain quality research.
- Farm Credit Canada:
- delivers financial services to all sectors of agriculture – primary producers, value-added businesses and suppliers.
- Farm Products Council of Canada:
- supervises the operations of national supply management agencies and promotion-research agencies.
- Canada Agricultural Review Tribunal:
- is a quasi-judicial tribunal that reviews notices of violation under certain agriculture and agri-food acts.
- Canadian Food Inspection Agency:
- dedicated to safeguarding food, animals and plants, which enhances the health and well-being of Canada's people, environment and economy.
Support to the Minister
- The Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Agri-food Canada, as the Minister's principal source of public service support and policy advice, is expected to advise the Minister on all matters under the Minister's responsibility and authority.
- While respecting the separate mandates of each Portfolio partner, the Deputy Minister is responsible for ensuring that the Portfolio functions cohesively and remains aligned with the Government's direction and priorities.
- The Portfolio Coordination Secretariat, acts as a centralized unit, mandated to coordinate with the Department and portfolio partners. This promotes good governance and results in coordination of policy, legislation, communications and accountability to Parliament.
- Ensures the Minister and Deputy Minister are informed of emerging and current issues across the Portfolio and provides an issues management function when challenges within the Portfolio arise.
- Supports communication and activities among portfolio organizations to ensure that all organizations have appropriate and timely information needed to fulfill their respective roles and mandates.
- Coordinates policy advice and long-term planning activities of the individual portfolio organizations in order to respond to changing government, industry and global market priorities.
- Supports portfolio organizations in fulfilling planning and reporting requirements of central agencies and serves as a “single window” point of contact for both the portfolio organization and central agencies.
- The Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food is responsible for all organizations in the Agriculture and Agri-food Portfolio, including:
Overview of Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) - Tab 20
Develop and deliver inspection and other services to:
- Protect plant resources from pests, diseases and invasive species;
- Prevent and manage animal diseases, including diseases that threaten human health (e.g. avian influenza);
- Prevent and manage food safety risks (e.g. inspection, food recalls);
- Contribute to consumer protection (e.g. labelling claims); and
- Facilitate market access for Canada's food, plants and animals.
The CFIA reports to two Ministers
Minister of Health
- Overall control of CFIA (operating budget, reports to Parliament)
- Food safety
- Delegations (shared)
Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
- Plant Health
- Animal Health
- Food labelling and claims (non-food safety)
- Market access
- Delegations (shared)
President of the CFIA
- Supervises direction of CFIA and its staff
- Sets out the strategic direction and confirms delivery of CFIA programs and services
Plant Health, Animal Health, Food Safety, International TradeA regulator….
To set rules and verify compliance with the rulesA risk manager….
To safeguard diverse public risks related to public health, economics and environmentA facilitator…
To improve the regulatory interface with industry and trading partners
Core Responsibilities - Plant Health
Protect Canada’s plant resource base
- Crops, horticulture, nurseries, forest resources and products, greenhouses, seeds, fertilizers, plants with novel traits, invasive alien species
Protects Canada’s plant resource base, environment and plant-related industries by:
- Preventing the introduction and spread of pests that could damage Canadian production and the income of Canadian producers;
- Verifying farmers have access to safe and effective agricultural inputs (e.g., seed, fertilizer) that support environmental sustainability;
- Fostering innovation through protection of intellectual property (i.e., plant breeders’ rights); and
- Maintaining the reputation of Canadian agricultural products in the global marketplace as being high-quality, pest free and safe.
Core Responsibilities - Animal Health
Protect Canada’s animal resource base and Canadians from diseases
- Includes livestock, poultry, animal feeds, and fish and seafood
Minimizes risks to Canada’s terrestrial and aquatic animal resource base, and ensures the safety of animal feeds, products and vaccines by:
- Protecting Canada’s animals, including aquatic animals, from diseases;
- Managing animal disease incidents and emergencies (e.g. avian influenza);
- Promoting and regulating animal welfare, in transportation and in slaughter; and
- Verifying that animal feeds and vaccines are safe and effective.
Core Responsibilities - Food Safety
Contribute to safeguarding Canada’s food supply
- Includes health and safety, nutrition, labelling
Develops and delivers programs and services to:
- Protect Canadians from preventable food safety hazards;
- Effectively manage food safety investigations and recalls; and
- Protect consumers and the marketplace from unfair practices
Contributes to consumer protection
- Verifies information provided to Canadian consumers through labels and that advertising is truthful and not misleading
Core Responsibilities - International Trade
Facilitate market access for Canada’s plants, animals and food
- Influence the development of international rules and standards for plant protection, animal health and food safety through international standard-setting bodies
- International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC)
- World Organization for Animal Health (OIE)
- Codex Alimentarius Commission (CODEX) (Food)
- Negotiate import / export conditions and technical agreements and standards
- Engage trading partners
- Facilitate market access, in collaboration with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and Global Affairs Canada
The CFIA’s Strategic Plan: Responding to Today, Building for the Future
Protect Canada’s food, plant and animal resource-base while supporting innovation
Modern regulatory toolkit
Outcome-based regulations with new compliance promotion tools
Target resources to where they are needed most
Integrated risk management
New risk management tools, analytics and surveillance to inform resource allocations and enforcement priorities
Greater efficiency and agility to respond to emerging risks
Consistent and efficient inspections
Single inspect approach focused on regulatory outcomes and supported by mobile tools and guidance
Embrace technology to make it easy to get information and services
Digital-first tools and services
Electronic access as the preferred method of requesting and receiving services
Support international consensus to safeguard food, plants and animals, while supporting market access
Pursue improved international standards, fairness in trade practices, enhanced use of technology and regulatory co-operation
Resources: 5,944 Full time equivalents and planned spending of $699.1 million in 2018-19
CFIA’s Regional Presence
Approximately 5,944 full-time equivalents are employed across the country:
- Headquarters in NCR
- Four operational areas - Western, Ontario, Quebec, Atlantic
- 17 regional offices
- 132 field offices
- 702 federally registered meat establishments (e.g. processing plants)
- 13 laboratories : Atlantic (2), Quebec, (2), Ontario (3), Western (6)
- International Partners
- Set import requirements, verify export requirements
- Comparability and acceptance of relevant systems (e.g. inspection)
- Develop international science-based rules, standards, etc.
- Provincial, Territorial and Municipal Governments
- Enforce jurisdictional food safety, plant and animal health requirements
- Collaborate in responding to food safety incidents
- Prevent and manage plant and animal health emergencies
- Federal Departments and Agencies
- Health Portfolio
- Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Portfolio
- Global Affairs Canada
- Canada Border Services Agency
- Fisheries and Oceans Canada
- Environment and Climate Change Canada
- Natural Resources Canada
- Shared Services Canada
- Innovation, Science and Economic Development
- Production of safe food
- Comply with regulatory requirements
- Develop and implement best management practices
- Safe food handling and preparation
- Awareness of plant and animal risks (e.g. transporting infested firewood)
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