Language selection

Search

2021-22 Departmental Plan

2021-22 Departmental Plan (PDF Version, 3,840 KB)

International Standard Serial Number: 2371-736X

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, P.C., M.P.,
Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

From the Minister

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's priorities for 2021–22 are rooted in an innovative and sustainable Canadian agriculture and agri-food industry that delivers the highest-quality food and agriculture products to Canadians and consumers around the world.

As the COVID-19 pandemic has underscored, the sector and its workforce are essential. Canadian farmers, food processors, front-line workers and volunteers have demonstrated great resiliency, stepping up to deliver despite their own challenges, including labour shortages, volatile markets, and processing slowdowns, not to mention the toll on both financial and mental well-being.

Building on our support for the sector and vulnerable Canadians through the pandemic, in 2021–22 Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue working with industry and government partners to help ensure they remain ready to address challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes helping ensure farmers and food processors can hire and keep their workers safe, while supporting food banks and other organizations in their vital services to Canadians in need.

Looking ahead, Canadian agriculture and food will be at the centre of the relaunch of Canada's economy, and the Department will continue to deliver business risk programs to support the recovery and resilience of the sector.

Trade will be a key driver of our recovery, and we will continue to diversify markets in North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific to help reach our target of $75 billion in agriculture and agri-food exports by 2025. We will continue to advocate for a predictable, science-based trading environment, while helping the sector innovate to meet changing consumer demands.

We will also continue to deliver on our commitment to support Canada's supply-managed sectors through investments and programming, to help our dairy, poultry, and egg producers adapt to market changes resulting from the implementation of our agreements with the European Union and the trans-Pacific zone; and we will consult with producers and processors on how to best compensate them for the impact of the Canada–United States–Mexico Agreement.

Greater participation of women, youth and Indigenous Peoples, as well as a more culturally-diverse workforce will help build a strong, innovative sector ready to meet the changing needs of tomorrow.

The first-ever Food Policy for Canada represents a groundbreaking, fresh approach to Canada's food system. Through 2021–22, investments under the policy will help Canadian communities access healthy food, make Canadian food the top choice at home and abroad, support food security in northern and Indigenous communities, and reduce food waste and fraud.

Investment in agricultural science and innovation, collaborative research through our science clusters and living laboratories, as well as a strong focus on clean technologies will drive the sector's productivity, sustainability, and competitiveness. Under Canada's strengthened climate plan, the $185-million Natural Climate Solutions for Agriculture Fund will help the sector use the power of nature and improved land management practices to support actions on climate change and other environmental priorities such as biodiversity over the next three decades.

With the challenges of climate change and plant and animal disease, helping farmers manage risk remains a top priority for the Government of Canada. Strong business risk management programs ensure a strong agriculture sector, because they give farmers the confidence they need to grow and succeed while ensuring our food security. Federal, provincial and territorial governments continue to work to improve Business Risk Management programs, most notably AgriStability.

To position our industry for even greater success, work is underway for the next agricultural policy framework, which will replace the Canadian Agricultural Partnership in 2023.

Canada's agriculture and food sector is a powerhouse of the economy, contributing more than $143 billion to our gross domestic product and employing more Canadians than any other manufacturing industry. Thanks to our innovative crops and technologies, and, of course, our world-class producers and food processors, the possibilities are truly endless for 2022 and beyond.

The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau
Privy Councillor, Member of Parliament
Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food

Plans at a glance

The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is a complex and integrated supply chain that brings significant economic benefits at both provincial and national levels. Identified as key to supporting Canada's future growth, the sector drove $67 billion of Canadian agriculture, agri-food, and seafood exports in 2019. The agriculture and agri-food system, including food retail and food service, contributed more than $143 billion annually to the country's gross domestic product in 2019, and the food processing sector employed more Canadians than any other manufacturing industry. Many factors contribute to the performance of the sector, and the agricultural operating environment is rapidly evolving as new opportunities and challenges arise.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada continues to work in collaboration with partners such as portfolio organizations, other government departments, provincial and territorial governments, and industry stakeholders to create conditions for the long-term profitability, sustainability, and adaptability of the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector.

Throughout 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue to support the provinces and territories in their delivery of cost-shared programming under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership. A shared investment between the federal government and the provinces and territories, cost-shared programming is designed and delivered by provincial and territorial governments to address the needs in their jurisdictions, while advancing the priority areas under the Partnership. This complements over $1 billion in federal programs and activities under the Partnership that focus on the following priorities: growing trade and expanding markets; the innovative and sustainable growth of the sector; and supporting diversity and a dynamic, evolving sector.

The Department, in partnership with provincial and territorial governments, will launch discussions for the design and development of the next agricultural policy framework to follow the Canadian Agricultural Partnership and come into force in 2023. Federal, provincial, and territorial governments will launch an initial engagement with industry stakeholders in 2021–22 to consult and collaborate on priority areas for the development of the new framework, to be articulated by Ministers of Agriculture in 2021.

The priorities that Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada have identified for 2021–22 focus on achieving results through initiatives, programs, and services to help create an efficient, sustainable and thriving sector. Efforts will support the delivery of the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food's mandate letter commitments, and broader Government of Canada priorities.

Support farmers, food businesses, and Canadians during the COVID-19 pandemic

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact Canada and its economy, and poses ongoing challenges for farmers and food businesses, the contributions of the agriculture and agri-food sector will be an important element of economic recovery. Although COVID-19 has disrupted global supply chains, the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector has shown great resilience, adapting to tremendous changes and continuing to deliver for Canadians. Federal, provincial, and territorial governments have been working to support these essential businesses throughout the pandemic, to address supply chain issues or labour shortages in the sector, to support farmers and processors in covering additional costs resulting from the pandemic, and to ensure that Canadians continue to have access to safe and nutritious food.

In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue working with industry and government partners to help ensure that the agriculture and agri-food sector remains ready to address the challenges brought on by COVID-19, and will continue to build on measures introduced since the beginning of the pandemic to support producers, food processors, and Canadians. This includes engaging with industry and government partners to identify strategies and rolling out support to help the agriculture and agri-food sector maintain cash flows and workforces, keep facilities and workers safe, and manage processing and production slowdowns, and support food security organizations.

Leverage opportunities from trade agreements and government investments to enhance trade diversification

Aligned with broader government objectives to increase and diversify Canadian exports, the Department will continue to assist the sector to take advantage of market opportunities and maintain or improve access to international markets, including through the negotiation and implementation of trade agreements, promoting Canadian agri-food and seafood products, and by resolving or mitigating market barriers. With over half of the value of Canadian agricultural production being exported, the growth of the sector is significantly influenced by increasing global demand for agricultural products, shifting consumer preferences, access to new and emerging markets, and continued access to existing markets.

Nearly three-quarters of Canada's agriculture and agri-food exports are destined for countries where Canada has a trade agreement that is signed or in force. However, the threat of increasing protectionism in other countries, leading to the introduction of tariffs or non-tariff barriers, impacts the economic outlook for producers who depend on export markets. Advocating for a predictable and stable trade environment can help to mitigate these risks. As well, implementing market development activities, and improving domestic and international market conditions help the sector strengthen its competitiveness and contribute to growing the Canadian economy.

Advance agriculture and agri-food science to modernize sector research and improve environmental resilience

Science and innovation are critical to maintaining the profitability, competitiveness, and sustainability of Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector, and are therefore fundamental to Canada's economic growth agenda. Increasingly, government, industry, and academia are applying a collaborative approach to build the sector's scientific capacity. These efforts position the sector to capture key opportunities and accelerate the flow of science and technology in support of future success. Agriculture plays a key role in meeting the Government's commitments related to clean growth and climate change. To further support this work, the 2020 Fall Economic Statement included plans to establish a new Natural Climate Solutions for Agriculture Fund, which will support actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and realize other environmental benefits.

Supporting scientific research will: increase the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector knowledge base; enable innovations in products, processes, and practices; strengthen the sector's competitive advantage; and enhance environmental sustainability, resilience, and performance. The Department will strengthen scientific research in a way that reflects Canada's diversity, including through support for the next generation of women, members of visible minority communities, and Indigenous researchers. Activities will focus on accelerating the staffing of departmental scientists and science professionals in new and emerging areas such as phenomics, predictive analytics, and clean technologies, and enhancing science investments related to innovation.

Help the sector to manage environmental and business risks by providing faster and better adapted support to producers

In addition to the economic forces within a competitive global marketplace, farmers face increased threats to food production and income posed by extreme weather events and animal or plant disease outbreaks. Sustainable growth rests on the effective implementation of a suite of business risk management tools for producers when they face significant risks. Furthermore, consumer demands are increasingly focused on the production methods and characteristics of Canadian products. The creation and application of certification and assurance systems – such as those related to environmentally-sustainable sourcing or food safety – help to position the sector to meet the demands of domestic and international markets, while working to reduce risks to animal, plant, and human health.

In collaboration with provincial and territorial governments and industry, and in alignment with the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food's mandate letter commitment, the Department will work with provincial counterparts to continue delivering and making targeted improvements to Business Risk Management programs, with a special focus on the AgriStability Program. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue providing programs and enabling services that help position the sector to meet consumer expectations regarding production and product assurances. Supporting industry efforts to develop and adopt standards, systems, and tools will allow them to make verifiable claims about agriculture and agri-food products and build public trust in Canada's food supply chain.

For more information on Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's plans, priorities, and planned results, see the “Core responsibilities: planned results and resources, and key risks” section of this report.

Core responsibilities: planned results and resources, and key risks

This section contains detailed information on the Department's planned results and resources for each of its core responsibilities. It also contains information on key risks related to achieving those results.

Domestic and International Markets

Description: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada provides programs and services and works in collaboration with the sector to support its competitiveness at home and abroad. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada also works to increase opportunities for the sector to export its products by maintaining and expanding market access and advancing agricultural interests internationally.

The Domestic and International Markets core responsibility is focused on advancing the following departmental results:

Planning highlights - Domestic and International Markets

Seizing opportunities in both domestic and international markets is critical to the economic growth and profitability of the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector. With increasing global connection, the Canadian agriculture and agri-food industry has an unprecedented opportunity to reach new markets, and a strong domestic sector is the foundation for international success. In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue working to enhance competitiveness and improve domestic and international market access conditions. Departmental efforts under this core responsibility support the Government of Canada's overall commitment to increase and diversify Canadian exports.

In addition, the Department will continue to deliver on the commitments made in 2019 when the Government of Canada launched the Food Policy for Canada, which aims to create a more coordinated and food systems-based approach to taking action on food-related opportunities and challenges. As outlined in the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-food's mandate letter, the Food Policy focuses on actions in the near term to: help Canadian communities access healthy food; make Canadian food the top choice at home and abroad; support food security in northern and Indigenous communities; and reduce food waste.

Result: The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector contributes to growing the economy

Improving the performance of the agriculture and agri-food sector, which is already a significant contributor to the Canadian economy, will increase exports and further contribute to economic growth, including in the context of COVID-19 economic recovery. The Department works in partnership with other federal departments, provinces and territories, industry associations, and other partners to deliver market access and market development services that enable the Canadian agricultural sector to compete in the global marketplace and build commercial success.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada provides a suite of market development tools and services including strategic intelligence, dedicated agricultural trade specialists as part of the Canadian Trade Commissioner, Canada Brand promotional tools, and the coordination of in-market engagement activities and trade shows. These resources help connect Canadian exporters with targeted business opportunities, promote the advantages of Canadian agriculture and food products to both buyers and consumers, and provide industry with information and learning opportunities to understand the requirements of getting their products to market. Investments in the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service, as well as the ongoing delivery of departmental programs such as AgriMarketing or other federal programs such as CanExport, continue to support the growth of Canadian agriculture and agri-food exports. These efforts to diversify Canadian agricultural trade support the Government of Canada's Export Diversification Strategy which is aimed at helping Canadian businesses access new markets.

In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will focus its market development efforts to help the sector adapt and evolve to emerging market conditions. For example, the AgriMarketing Program will continue to work with recipients to adapt their marketing activities to best support the industry given the prevailing conditions. The Department will focus efforts on facilitating virtual business development for Canadian companies in international markets, building on successes to date with targeted online business-to-business meetings, virtual tradeshows and product showcases, introductions to established retail and consumer e-commerce platforms, as well as providing new resources to assist companies in taking advantage of these new virtual opportunities. These efforts will be complemented by traditional in-person market development initiatives, such as international trade shows, which will be carried out in accordance with the individual COVID-19 recovery status abroad. This two-pronged approach, delivered in coordination with our federal, provincial, and sector partners will help Canadian exporters continue to take advantage of opportunities and build their competitive advantage.

The Department will also continue to provide market development support in the form of pathfinding services to help companies grow domestically and consider their export-readiness, by helping companies to develop strategies to expand domestically and successfully transition to international markets.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue supporting the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector to take advantage of market and trade opportunities in 2021–22, including those in Europe and Asia resulting from the Canada–European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), and the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), as well as promoting benefits for the Canadian agricultural sector resulting from the implementation of the Canada–United States–Mexico Agreement (CUSMA). To support the agriculture and agri-food sector's ability to increase exports to the European Union under CETA, the Department will continue to promote the rigour of Canadian systems, its best practices, as well as its policies on food safety and sustainability. In addition, the Canada-United Kingdom Trade Continuity Agreement will preserve the preferential market access secured under CETA and our competitive advantages in the United Kingdom after BREXIT.

The Department will continue to support Canada's dairy, poultry, and egg sectors through programming intended to help these sectors adapt to market changes resulting from the implementation of specific trade agreements. As provided in Budget 2019, the Federal Government announced $1.75 billion over eight years to Canadian dairy farmers. This included $345 million in direct payments through the Dairy Direct Payment Program in 2019–20. In November 2020, the Government of Canada set a schedule to accelerate delivering the remaining $1.405 billion through direct payments to dairy farmers over a timeline of three years, with up to $468 million in 2020–21, up to $469 million in 2021–22 and $468 million in 2022–23. The Government of Canada also announced funding in November 2020, for programs to support Canada's chicken, turkey, egg, and broiler hatching egg farmers. These programs, which will help drive innovation and growth, are expected to launch in the 2021–22 fiscal year. In 2021–22, the Department will also continue to engage the sector on full and fair compensation for the impacts of the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement, and with processors of dairy, poultry, and egg products. This work supports the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food's mandate letter commitment to continue working with those sectors to develop a vision for the future.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue supporting the agriculture and agri-food sector's long-term competitiveness by addressing challenges that could impede growth. In 2021–22, the Department will launch the Sector Engagement Tables (formerly the Value Chain Roundtables) to facilitate strategic industry–government collaboration on key issues facing the sector. The model includes five sector advancement tables (Animal Protein, Field Crops, Horticulture, Seafood, and Food Processing), four thematic tables (Agile Regulations, Consumer Demand and Market Trends, Skills Development, and Sustainability), as well as fora for underrepresented groups in agriculture and agri-food, namely youth, women, and Indigenous peoples. For example, the first Canadian Agricultural Youth Council held its first meeting in September 2020 and the other fora are expected to convene in 2021–22. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department will continue its collaboration with industry to share best practices on current and future competencies needed to support sector renewal, careers in the sector, new and changing technologies, and recruitment and retention strategies.

Result: Access to international markets is increased by resolving or mitigating market barriers and advancing trade positions

Canada is among the world's largest exporters of agri-food and seafood products, with exports valued at $67 billion in 2019, representing more than half of Canada's total agriculture, agri-food, and seafood production. Despite challenges, exports of agriculture and agri-food products continue to grow, trending up 10 percent through 2020 compared to the previous year. The profitability and potential for growth in the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector lies in its ability to maintain and expand markets abroad. Departmental efforts continue to focus on enhancing Canada's market presence, including by working to maintain, re-open, and expand market access for Canadian products; engaging with multilateral organizations and fora such as the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the Group of 20 (G20), Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, among others; negotiating and implementing trade agreements with key international partners; monitoring and enforcing international trade commitments; and advocating for science-based trade rules.

The Department's efforts to pursue free trade agreements with key partners and to advocate for science-based trade rules supports and enhances Canada's international market presence. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue to promote and defend the interests of the agriculture and agri-food sector in trade disputes and trade remedy cases. Canada's ability to promote those interests and advance positions in trade negotiations, or to resolve or mitigate market access barriers, are measures of success towards the Department's expected result of increased access for Canadian products internationally. This is also an important component of the Government of Canada's economic recovery plan in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Addressing barriers to trade is often a lengthy and comprehensive process that requires collaboration between Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Global Affairs Canada, and staff in Canadian missions abroad, as well as with provinces, territories, and industry stakeholders. Preventing and addressing barriers to trade requires sustained technical and diplomatic efforts, as well as the ability to swiftly react to emerging issues and work collaboratively to achieve results.

In addition, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue advancing agriculture and agri-food interests in trade negotiations in 2021–22, such as those currently taking place at the World Trade Organization; with MERCOSUR countries (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, and Uruguay); with the Pacific Alliance (Chile, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru); through other trade initiatives with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations; and CPTPP accessions. Building on the recently concluded Canada-United Kingdom Trade Continuity Agreement, Canada will launch negotiations of a future new comprehensive free trade agreement with the United Kingdom. Working with government partners, the Department will advocate for open and rules-based international trade in agriculture and agri-food products and contribute to ongoing Government of Canada efforts to modernize the rules of the World Trade Organization.

Responding to food insecurity and supply chain issues resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic had significant impacts on the agriculture and agri-food sector in 2020–21 and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada responded with initiatives to support both the sector and Canadians. The Department will continue to monitor the situation affecting the agriculture and agri-food sector into 2021–22, to support overall economic recovery.

Although the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted global supply chains, the Canadian agri-food sector remains resilient, and exports of agriculture and agri-food products continue to grow. Throughout the pandemic, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada has coordinated with provincial and territorial governments to maintain the integrity of supply chains and access to a diverse range of products. This included measures to protect the health and safety of workers in the food supply chain, to ensure the continued availability of labour, and to help farmers and processors with cashflow and access to capital. These efforts will contribute to the country's economic recovery and support producers and food processors to remain competitive during these challenging times. In 2021–22, the Department will continue to build on measures introduced since the beginning of the pandemic to support the agriculture and agri-food sector.

In addition to these efforts, the pandemic has highlighted differences between retailers and processors with respect to fees and supply issues. As a result, federal, provincial, and territorial governments are establishing a working group to look into this issue, with a report expected to be discussed by Ministers of Agriculture at their Annual Conference in 2021.

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada has committed up to $200 million through the Emergency Food Security Fund to Canadian food banks and other national food rescue organizations to help improve access to food for people experiencing food insecurity in Canada due to the pandemic. Funds were used to purchase food and other basic necessities; buy or rent equipment and materials; transport and distribute food; access new distribution centres; hire temporary help to fill volunteer shortages; and implement biosecurity measures. Since the launch of the Emergency Food Security Fund in April 2020, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada has supported 3,215 projects across Canada for a total of $95.5 million, including $17.7 million to 820 organizations serving Indigenous communities.

A Surplus Food Rescue Program was also launched in 2020-21, providing up to $50 million to purchase and redistribute food surpluses to organizations addressing food insecurity across Canada.

In pursuing results within the Domestic and International Markets core responsibility, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will also undertake efforts that align with Government of Canada commitments, such as inclusive outcomes for Canadians, sustainable development, and experimentation. The following outlines the Department's plans in these areas for 2021–22.

Gender-based analysis plus - Domestic and International Markets

Advancing diversity and inclusion in the agriculture and agri-food sector remains a priority, and the Department continues to explore ways to enhance diversity by supporting underrepresented groups' participation across the agricultural value chain. For example, the AgriDiversity program seeks to increase the participation of underrepresented groups within the agriculture and agri-food sector. Similarly, the Indigenous Agriculture and Food Systems Initiative supports diversity with its objective to strengthen and build Indigenous capacity within the sector and to fill gaps in existing programming.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada also continues to operate the Indigenous Pathfinder Service, which helps Indigenous Peoples and communities navigate the Department's programs and services. The Service offers personalized, one-on-one assistance to help Indigenous organizations or individuals navigate programming and develop opportunities in the agriculture and agri-food sector.

The Department is in the process of developing a strategy to help address gender gaps across the entire agriculture and agri-food value chain. Strategy development will take place in collaboration with industry and other stakeholders. Gender-based analysis plus will be used extensively to ensure that the strategy is inclusive, and that analysis is as intersectional as possible, recognizing socio- demographic and identity differences.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is also committed to engaging with a diverse range of industry representatives, which is reflected by the commitment to create fora for underrepresented groups in agriculture and agri-food, including youth, women, and Indigenous Peoples as part of the Sector Engagement Tables. The Canadian Agricultural Youth Council was launched in 2020, and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is working towards creating a Women Agricultural Leaders Table, which will allow for joint collaboration on objectives relevant to gender-based analysis and considerations for the sector. The Department is also committed to thorough gender-based analysis plus of all trade agreements, working with Global Affairs Canada to assess the impacts of Canada's Free Trade Agreement provisions.

The United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by Canada and all 193 United Nations member states in 2015, is a global framework centered around an ambitious set of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), covering the interconnected economic, social, and environmental dimensions of sustainable development. A 2030 Agenda National Strategy, being led by Employment and Social Development Canada, will accelerate progress on the SDGs through engagement with Canadians.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's efforts under the Domestic and International Markets core responsibility support Canada's efforts to address the United Nations 2030 Agenda and the SDGs. Canada's agricultural trade policy encourages open and predictable trade and science-based approaches to governing food systems. This helps farmers around the world to reach customers, earn better incomes, and escape poverty and hunger, and contributes to:

Actions towards achieving the long-term outcomes of the Food Policy for Canada will also contribute towards the Government's commitments for sustainable development, for example, through the following SDGs:

Experimentation - Domestic and International Markets

In collaboration with Impact Canada, in November 2020, the Department launched the first two streams of the Government of Canada's Food Waste Reduction Challenge which focus on solutions that provide an innovative way of "doing business" (i.e. business model) to reduce food waste across any or multiple stages of the food supply chain. The launch of two additional challenge streams focused on technological solutions to food waste is planned for spring 2021 and will support technologies that can extend the life of food or transform food that would otherwise be lost or wasted. The Food Waste Reduction Challenge will use a stage-gated approach to move innovators through the process of developing and deploying their solutions. Challenges offer funding and other resources to help global innovators put their ideas into action and deliver meaningful results for Canadians. Lessons learned through this experiment will better position the Department to use challenges in other areas of programming in the future.

In addition, in fall 2020, the Department launched an experiment that looked to increase application uptake by women to the AgriDiversity program with the aim of establishing a local/provincial/national female voice on agriculture and agri-food issues. Industry engagement sessions will continue in 2021–22 with the intent to support eligible industry-led initiatives focused on advancing women in agriculture.

Key risks - Domestic and International Markets

The magnitude of the COVID-19 pandemic and associated economic impacts on the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is a key risk that the Department will continue to monitor throughout 2021–22. System shocks such as labour shortages, plant closures along the supply chain, or reduced consumption in the food services sector resulting from the pandemic could lead to lower growth rates and reductions in sales for the agriculture and agri-food sector. There is the risk that the unknown and potentially lasting impacts of the pandemic will challenge Canada's ability to reach its export diversification goals and targets. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada continues to monitor these factors to support the agriculture and agri-food sector in responding to these challenges.

The global political environment and the threat of rising protectionism among trading partners also increases the risk that tariff or non-tariff barriers could have a negative impact on Canada's exports, potentially limiting the ability of the agriculture and agri-food sector to increase or diversify its agriculture, agri-food, and seafood exports. To mitigate this risk, the Department will continue to support the development and adoption of science-based international standards, guidance, and recommendations and will actively engage on these issues with international standard-setting bodies and other multilateral partners. The Department will also continue to work collaboratively with other government departments to address market access issues in individual countries that could impede Canadian agriculture and agri-food trade.

Planned results for Domestic and International Markets
Departmental result Departmental result indicator Target Date to achieve target 2017–18
actual result
2018–19
actual result
2019–20
actual result
The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector contributes to growing the economy Percentage change in the economic performance of the agriculture and agri-food sector At least 2.5%[1] December 2025[2] 2.1%[3] 2.5%[3] 2.5%[3]
The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector contributes to growing the economy Percentage change in agri-food products sold At least 4.5%[1] December 2025[2] 3.6%[4] 2.8%[4] 2.8%[5]
The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector contributes to growing the economy Value of agriculture and agri-food exports At least
$75 billion by 2025
December 2025[2] $64.8 billion $66.2 billion $67.0 billion
Access to international markets is increased by resolving or mitigating market barriers and advancing trade positions Degree to which Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada advances the resolution or the mitigation of market access barriers, World Trade Organization disputes, and technical trade issues At least 80%[6] March 2022 Not available 85% 84%
Access to international markets is increased by resolving or mitigating market barriers and advancing trade positions Degree to which Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada advances trade policy through negotiations, agreements and discussions At least 80%[7] March 2022 Not available 87% 87%

Note: For indicators introduced in 2018–19 as part of the transition to the Departmental Results Framework, past results have been sourced from publicly available data, where applicable. Actual results that are “not available” were not previously measured or reported prior to 2018–19.

  1. Targets were amended in 2020–21 using calculation of compound annual growth rate between 2017 and 2025 (previously reported as annual growth rate prior to 2020–21) and to reflect re-based GDP data from 2007 to 2012 which affected the calculation of the results indicator baseline.
  2. The “Date to achieve target” for these results indicators was updated to reflect the fact that the targets are cumulative and to be reached by 2025 (data by calendar year).
  3. Result is based on calendar year data and uses the compound annual growth rate between 2017 and the year of reporting.
  4. Result is based on calendar year data and uses the compound annual growth rate between 2017 and the year of reporting.
  5. A complex interaction of risk factors contributed to this indicator not reaching its target in 2019–20, including labour shortages, foreign market access issues, transportation infrastructure disruptions, low technology investment, and regulatory challenges. Further reduction in agri-food product sales due to reduced consumption in the service sector as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic could affect the Department's ability to successfully achieve this results target by 2025.
  6. Performance against this indicator and target is self-assessed based on a scale of 0% to 100%, whereby a score of 80% to 99% indicates the following: (1) that activities required to advance the resolution and mitigation of market access barriers are undertaken effectively; (2) that, with respect to World Trade Organization disputes and technical trade issues, all Canadian partners and stakeholders are engaged to understand issues; (3) that policy advice is provided in response to most requests; and (4) that frequent problem-solving discussions are held. Additional information on the scale and methodology used is available on GC InfoBase.
  7. Performance against this indicator and target is self-assessed based on a scale of 0% to 100%, whereby a score of 80% to 99% indicates strong engagement to bring Canada's position forward; and evidence that key issues have been advanced in promoting or advancing Canadian policy positions. Additional information on the scale and methodology used is available on GC InfoBase.
Planned budgetary financial resources for Domestic and International Markets
2021–22 budgetary spending
(as indicated in Main Estimates)
2021–22
planned spending
2022–23
planned spending
2023–24
planned spending
705,003,048 705,003,048 651,080,857 67,861,907

Note: The decrease in planned spending in 2022–23 is due to the expiry of the Dairy Processing Investment Fund and the Dairy Farm Investment Program at the end of 2021–22. The decrease in 2023–24 reflects the expiry of the current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and the funding amount is not yet determined. The decrease also reflects the expiry of the current Dairy Direct Payment Program.

Planned human resources for Domestic and International Markets
2021–22
planned full-time equivalents
2022–23
planned full-time equivalents
2023–24
planned full-time equivalents
515 491 491

Note: The decreases in full-time equivalents in 2022–23 are due to the expiry of the Dairy Processing Investment Fund and the Dairy Farm Investment Program at the end of 2021–22. The current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities expire at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and it is anticipated that full-time equivalents will remain stable.

Financial, human resources, and performance information for the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada program inventory is available in the GC InfoBase.

Science and Innovation

Description: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada conducts scientific research, develops new knowledge and new technologies, and transfers the results to the agriculture and agri-food sector. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada also works with industry and other partners to strengthen the sector's capacity to develop and adopt innovative practices, products, and processes.

The Science and Innovation core responsibility is focused on advancing the following departmental results:

Planning highlights - Science and Innovation

Science and innovation drive productivity, sustainability, and competitiveness in the agriculture and agri-food sector. Efforts at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, including collaborations with industry, academia, and other federal, provincial, territorial and international partners, are essential to better position the sector for future success and foster growth. The 2020 Speech from the Throne noted agriculture's role in fighting climate change, and the 2020 Fall Economic Statement proposed the establishment of a new Natural Climate Solutions for Agriculture Fund to support the sector's actions on greenhouse gas emissions mitigation, carbon sequestration, and other environmental priorities. Canada's strengthened climate plan, A Healthy Environment and a Healthy Economy, announced in December 2020, builds on continuing work with provinces and territories to reduce emissions and combat climate change. In 2021–22, the Department will continue working to deliver on these Government commitments by increasing its efforts in research and innovation in key areas including mitigation of and adaptation to climate change; ensuring that science capacity is maximized; and supporting industry to adopt practices that improve resilience, with an emphasis on the environment and clean growth.

Result: The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector knowledge base is increased through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada supported scientific and innovative research

The Department supports scientific research to enhance knowledge and encourage the development of innovative products, processes, or practices that can be commercialized and adopted by the agriculture and agri-food industry. The sector's science needs are growing in complexity. New technologies are emerging, the government policy and program landscape is changing, and the science capacity of other players in Canada's agri-innovation system–such as provincial and territorial governments, universities, and the private sector–continues to evolve.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue to evolve and adapt to this changing landscape so that it can continue to play a role in assisting the sector in finding solutions to the long-term risks and challenges facing industry while keeping a view to the future to further enhance Canada's agricultural competitiveness on the world stage.

In 2021–22, the Department will continue to deliver the AgriScience Program under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, which aims to accelerate the pace of innovation by providing funding and support for pre-commercial science activities and cutting-edge research that benefits the agriculture and agri-food sector. In 2021–22, the 19 AgriScience Clusters, which mobilize industry, government, and academia through partnerships and address priority themes and horizontal issues that are national in scope, will continue ongoing research and development including publication of results. Funding under the AgriScience Projects component supports specific shorter-term research activities to help industry overcome challenges and address fiscal barriers experienced by small and emerging sectors.

A continued focus on environmental sustainability, resilience, and performance, with a specific emphasis on climate change mitigation and adaptation, will be a priority for the Department in 2021–22. The Government of Canada has adopted a target of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, and all sectors, including agriculture, are expected to contribute to these emission reductions. The sector faces a variety of risks every year: unpredictable weather patterns, and extreme weather events significantly affect Canadian agriculture with varying effects across regions; drought and excessive heat can stress crops and livestock, and lower yields; excessive moisture can result in flooding that can negatively impact production and lead to soil erosion and the loss of arable land; and climate change can create more favourable conditions for pest survival and migration.

In this context, in 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will work to advance its scientific research on how to mitigate and adapt to the impacts of climate change, particularly with respect to reducing risks and taking advantage of potential economic opportunities. For example, research activities may explore ways to improve agriculture's use of natural resources like water use efficiency, improved nutrient usage, improved soil health, and increased feed efficiency. These and other areas of research are vital to supporting the agriculture and agri-food sector's long-term resilience and economic stability and can contribute to achieving the Government's economic and environmental goals.

Result: The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices

The Department's focus on collaborative science and technology efforts enhances the impact of government, industry, and academic expertise by reducing duplication of work and leveraging private-sector research capacities. Research partnerships make government investments more valuable and ensure that the research is relevant to Canadian industry. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada also builds collaborative research by supporting investments in the commercialization and adoption of new innovations, which will then encourage the transformation of research-generated ideas into new business practices. These investments will assist industry in addressing the gap between research and commercialization, and will mitigate the risk inherent in applying new technologies to commercial-level production. For example, in 2021–22, the Department will continue to fund projects under the AgriInnovate Program. This program's objective is to accelerate the commercialization, adoption and/or demonstration of innovative products, technologies, processes or services that increase sector competitiveness and sustainability.

The sustainable management of agricultural resources is vital to the continued growth and competitiveness of Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector. In 2021–22, the Department will continue to conduct science and innovation through the Living Laboratories Initiative, a coordinated, long-term, nationwide network of Living Laboratories sites. The Initiative funds collaborative federal research projects that bring together farmers, scientists, and other partners to co-develop, test, and monitor new practices and technologies in a real-life context. The result will be more practical technologies and sustainable farming practices that can be adopted more quickly by Canadian farmers. Living Laboratory sites in the Eastern Prairies, the Atlantic region, and Quebec were launched successfully in 2019 and 2020, with a site planned for Ontario in 2021. In 2021–22, activities will continue to focus on adjusting to climate change, reduction of water contamination, improving soil and water conservation, and maximizing habitat capacity and biodiversity on agricultural landscapes. The new Natural Climate Solutions for Agriculture Fund, proposed in the 2020 Fall Economic Statement, will also support the sector's actions on climate change and other environmental priorities towards 2030 and 2050.

In pursuing results within the Science and Innovation core responsibility, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will also undertake efforts that align with Government of Canada commitments, such as inclusive outcomes for Canadians, sustainable development, and experimentation. The following outlines the Department's plans in these areas for 2021–22.

Gender-based analysis plus - Science and Innovation

Gender-based analysis plus highlights the importance of a diverse and representative workforce in providing the combination of skills and expertise that is required to address the complex challenges facing the agricultural sector. The Department will continue to support science and innovation by hiring the next generation of federal research scientists and science professionals, seeking opportunities, where possible, to ensure diverse and underrepresented groups are considered in these hiring efforts to close the representation gap. By the end of 2021–22, the planned staffing of 75 new positions will be completed, growing the federal agriculture science capacity in critical new areas like phenomics, predictive analytics, and clean technologies. In ensuring that science staffing promotes inclusiveness and diversity, priority is given to both women and Indigenous candidates. Over the past two years, 45 percent of staffed science positions have been filled by women and four Indigenous scientists have been hired over the same period.

In support of the government-wide priority to promote gender equality, diversity and inclusiveness, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue to facilitate webinars and training sessions to increase information available to reach, educate and influence youth about possible career paths and inspire the next generation of Canadian female agricultural scientists. The Women in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) Network, an employee-led initiative established in 2015, continues its work to promote an environment in science and science-related activities at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada that is inclusive and welcoming for women. The Network identifies challenges or concerns affecting its members and offers peer and professionally-led sessions to address these issues, support work/life balance, and help make the Department’s science professions desirable for women. The Network also celebrates women's scientific contributions, past and present, and communicates these achievements to internal and external audiences. Women in STEM continues to collaborate with the Department’s other diversity networks to address common issues and promote a diverse and inclusive workplace.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Indigenous Science Liaison Office continues to support the Department's researchers in building relationships, engaging, and ultimately co-developing research projects with Indigenous partners. In 2021–22, the Indigenous Science Liaison Office will continue providing science-specific Indigenous cultural literacy and intercultural competency training to staff, researchers, and management; liaising between researchers and potential Indigenous partners; creating guides and tools; and providing input in science policy and programming to facilitate Indigenous research partnerships.

In 2021–22, the Department-led Indigenous Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (I-STEM) Cluster, an interdepartmental team established in 2019 across 11 science-based departments and agencies, will continue to inform and enhance departmental policies, programs, activities and recruitment related to STEM disciplines in order to accelerate the advancement of Indigenous aspirations and innovation in agriculture and natural resource stewardship.

Through cooperation with other departments and agencies, and co-development with Indigenous partners, the I-STEM Cluster will help to:

The United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's planned activities under the Science and Innovation core responsibility support Canada's efforts to address the United Nations 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The Department continues to modernize its delivery of science and technology to provide leadership in the growth and development of a competitive, innovative, and sustainable Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector. For example, the Living Laboratories Initiative, the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, and various research areas guided by the Department's sector science strategies contribute toward:

Experimentation - Science and Innovation

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is committed to using experimentation to drive innovation in policy and program design and delivery. Experimentation requires the exploration, testing, and comparison of the effects and impacts of policies and interventions to inform evidence- based decision-making that further drives policy and program innovation. Efforts will continue within the Department to explore ways to incorporate formal experimentation theories into its Science and Innovation programming, particularly for initiatives focused on program delivery models.

Key risks - Science and Innovation

Agriculture and agri-food science and innovation programming is intended to facilitate the Department's long-term outcomes, such as increasing productivity and improving the environmental performance of the agriculture sector. Ultimately, successfully achieving these outcomes depends on factors that are beyond the Department's control, such as climate change, market conditions, level of research capacity, and availability of skilled workers. In particular, in 2021–22 there is a risk that science and innovation outcomes are impacted as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, due to financial impacts, reduced investment, or skilled labour shortages. As the pandemic continues, the risk of delays to the Department's research agenda could further impact the innovation and new technologies adopted by the sector. To mitigate this risk, the Department will continue to support knowledge-transfer activities to accelerate the adoption and prioritization of investments in science and innovation to strengthen competitiveness and resilience.

Over the coming decades, Canadian producers will face new risks resulting from climate change, such as varying growing seasons, drier or wetter conditions, and extreme weather events that could impact agricultural production capacity. The Department will continue to design and support scientific research and provide programming that contributes to the agri-environmental resilience of the sector. In 2021–22, the Department will increase its focus on scientific research on climate change, particularly risk reduction and strengthened economic opportunities.

Advancing science priorities during the COVID-19 pandemic

All of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Research and Development Centres remained open in a limited capacity at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. Subsequent gradual increases in reintegration of researchers back into worksites has been an important step in assuring Canadians that the Department is continuing to advance its science priorities.

In the spring of 2020, Departmental employees took care of critical services such as scientific equipment maintenance, livestock care, and land stewardship, and then moved to restart time-sensitive field-based research such as registration trials, early generation variety plots to support genetic development, agronomic trials, integrated pest management research, and agri-environmental monitoring. After a careful evaluation based on business and research priorities, the physical workspace, and safety of staff, a gradual re-entry of researchers to conduct projects and activities in laboratories, greenhouses, and barns began at all Research Centres. Projects and activities that could be conducted virtually have continued throughout the pandemic.

In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue to evaluate and prioritize its research to ensure that science capacity is maximized and that industry is supported to adopt practices that improve resiliency, with an emphasis on the environment and clean growth.

Planned results for Science and Innovation
Departmental result Departmental result
indicator
Target Date to
achieve target
2017–18
actual result
2018–19
actual result
2019–20
actual result
The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector knowledge base is increased through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada supported scientific and innovative research Percentage of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada scientific publications produced through collaboration

At least 75%

Collaboration with external collaborators rises to at least 75% of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada peer-reviewed scientific publications

March 2023 76% 73% 77%
The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector knowledge base is increased through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada supported scientific and innovative research Number of citations as a proportion of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada scientific publications An average of at least 15 citations per Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada peer-reviewed publication in the span of 5 years is maintained[1] March 2022

15

(based on citations from 2013 to 2018 for peer- reviewed publications published in 2013)

15

(based on citations from 2014 to 2019 for peer- reviewed publications published in 2014)

Not available

(results available in February 2021; for citations from 2015 to 2020)

The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices Number of new technologies, products, practices, processes, or systems that are available for transfer to the sector Average development of 100 new innovations annually with the goal of achieving 500 over the Canadian Agricultural Partnership framework (2018-2023) March 2023 104 106 108
The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices Percentage of revenues generated on farms adopting innovative practices At least 55% of total Canadian agricultural gross revenues are generated by farms that adopt innovative products, processes, or practices between 2023 and 2025 December 2025[2]

53%

(based on results from the 2017 Farm Financial Survey for the period from 2015 to 2017)

Not available

Not available

(results available in 2021)

The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices Percentage of processors developing and/ or introducing innovations 75% of food processors with sales of $1 million or more introducing at least one product, process, marketing or organizational innovation between 2021 and 2020[3] December 2023 Not available Not available

72%

Based on survey results for 2016 to 2018

The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices Index of Agri-Environmental Sustainability (water, soil, air quality, biodiversity) At least an Index of 71[4] March 2030[5] Not available Not available

Not available

(results available in 2021 based on the 2016 Census of Agriculture)

The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices Percentage change in the productivity of the agriculture and agri-food sector

At least 1.4%

Agriculture sector: Maintain annual productivity growth rate at 1.4% between 2016 and 2026

December 2026[6] Not available Not available

Not available

(results available in 2022)

The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices Percentage change in the productivity of the agriculture and agri-food sector

At least 0.2%

Agri-food sector: Compound annual growth rate increases to at least 0.2% between 2016-2026

December
2026[7]
Not available Not available Not available (results available in 2023)

Note: For indicators introduced in 2018–19 as part of the transition to the Departmental Results Framework, past results have been sourced from publicly available data, where applicable. Actual results that are “not available” were not previously measured or reported prior to 2018–19 or are due to lag times in data availability as noted below.

  1. Indicator measures citations in the span of five years, between time of publication and citations.
  2. Data from the Farm Financial Survey is available every 2 years with a 2-year lag time.
  3. Baseline and target were established based on the 2016–18 “Survey on Innovation in the Food Processing Industry” in 2019.
  4. The Index ranges from 0-100, whereby 0-19 represents an “undesirable” status, 20-39 represents “poor”, 40-59 represents “moderate”, 60-79 represents “good” and 80-100 represents “desired”. An index of 71 would indicate that overall water, soil, air, and biodiversity quality related to agricultural lands is rated as “good” or, in other words, that agri-environmental health is at low risk of being significantly degraded.
  5. Indicator is dependent on Census of Agriculture data, which is collected every five years, and then has a five-year lag time for the data to be processed, analyzed, and reported.
  6. Indicator is dependent on Census of Agriculture data, which is collected every five years, and then has a three-year lag time for results calculation; 2026 result will be available in December 2029.
  7. Indicator has a four-year lag time; 2026 result will be available in March 2030.
Planned budgetary financial resources for Science and Innovation
2021–22 budgetary spending
(as indicated in Main Estimates)
2021–22
planned spending
2022–23
planned spending
2023–24
planned spending
615,035,822 615,035,822 574,942,432 328,059,976

Note: Planned Spending in 2021–22 is higher as it includes funding for the Canadian Agricultural Partnership that was reprofiled from other years as well as revenue from the sale of property. The decrease in planned spending in 2022–23 is due to a decrease in funding for the Advance Agricultural Discovery Science and Innovation Initiative and to the expiry of funding related to genomics, digitization and data mobilization of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's biological collections. The decrease in 2023–24 reflects the expiry of the current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and the funding amount is not yet determined. It also reflects a further decrease in funding for the Advance Agricultural Discovery Science and Innovation Initiative.

Planned human resources for Science and Innovation
2021–22
planned full-time equivalents
2022–23
planned full-time equivalents
2023–24
planned full-time equivalents
2,635 2,606 2,606

Note: The decrease in full-time equivalents in 2022–23 is due to the expiry of the funding for genomics, digitization and data mobilization of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's biological collections at the end of 2021–22. The current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities expire at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and it is anticipated that full-time equivalents will remain stable.

Financial, human resources, and performance information for the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada program inventory is available in the GC InfoBase.

Sector Risk

Description: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada provides tools to mitigate the financial impact of risks beyond producers' control that threaten the viability of their operations. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada also works with the sector to ensure that systems, standards, and tools are developed to support its ability to prevent and control risks and address market demands.

The Sector Risk core responsibility is focused on advancing the following departmental results:

Planning highlights - Sector risk

An effective suite of agricultural risk management tools helps ensure the continued growth and resiliency of the agriculture and agri-food sector. In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue working with provincial and territorial governments to deliver programming and services that help farmers when they face risks beyond their capacity to manage, including risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Department will continue supporting industry-led efforts to develop and implement assurance systems that respond to consumer demands for specific product attributes, while protecting the sector against threats to plant and animal health. Efforts related to the Sector Risk core responsibility are critical to ensuring a reliable supply of Canadian food products and to maintaining public confidence in the agricultural supply chain.

Result: The agricultural sector is financially resilient

The financial health of Canadian farms serves as an indication of the agriculture and agri-food sector's overall resilience to ever-evolving market and environmental conditions. Under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, producers have access to a suite of Business Risk Management programs to help manage risks such as natural disasters, weather events, severe loss, and market volatility. On average, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and provincial and territorial governments provide $1.6 billion in support to producers each year to help ensure that they can withstand the impacts from extraordinary or severe events.

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact Canada's economy, and poses ongoing challenges for the agriculture and agri-food sector, Business Risk Management programs help meet the needs of farmers facing circumstances affecting the viability of their farms:

In December 2019, federal, provincial, and territorial Ministers of Agriculture announced a number of short-term changes to the AgriStability program in 2020–21 to ensure it meets producers' immediate needs while they consider long-term changes. This included changes to the treatment of private insurance payments which will be treated as non-allowable income in the calculation of the program year margin starting with the 2020 program year, meaning that payments producers receive from private insurance will no longer reduce the support that they receive from AgriStability.

Following further review of Business Risk Management programming against its intended objectives, federal, provincial, and territorial Ministers of Agriculture met in November 2020 to discuss possible options for improvements to Business Risk Management programs, including potential immediate enhancements to the AgriStability program. The Government of Canada proposal for immediate changes to AgriStability, that is being considered by provinces and territories, would remove the reference margin limit and increase the AgriStability compensation rate from 70 percent up to 80 percent. Since business risk management programs are cost-shared, changes require a consensus between the Government of Canada and a majority of provinces and territories.

In 2021–22, the Department will continue working with provincial and territorial partners to make targeted improvements to the Business Risk Management programs, with ongoing engagement with industry. This work will help to ensure that the program suite can best contribute to sector growth objectives, while addressing the ever-evolving risks that threaten farm viability.

Result: The agriculture and agri-food sector is equipped with assurance systems and supporting tools

Assurance systems provide a framework for producers to adopt food safety, biosecurity, traceability, and emergency management measures to proactively manage their risks. In addition to their risk management attributes, assurance systems also assure buyers and consumers of production practices that support sustainability, animal welfare, and other attributes (e.g., organic, halal, kosher). Assurance systems can help increase producer credibility and consumer confidence, both domestic and abroad, by assuring that a product is produced as advertised. This is important as buyers are increasingly demanding that products have certain characteristics, or are produced using specific methods, and are requiring industry to prove any such claims.

In 2021–22, the Department will continue to support the industry, through the AgriAssurance program, to develop and adopt systems, standards, and tools that allow them to make meaningful and verifiable claims about agriculture and agri-food products, and to respond to buyers' demands that the food meet requirements related to, for example, safety, quality, traceability, sustainability, or animal welfare. By helping to verify that practices along the food supply chain meet given standards, these projects are intended to build trust in Canadian products. Funding available under the program's national industry association component supports projects at a national level that help industry to meet demands for specific product attributes or production methods. Funding is also available to small and medium-sized enterprises, providing targeted support to help them implement third-party assurance certifications required to access foreign markets.

The Department will also continue to collaborate with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency to recognize industry-led food safety standards and develop biosecurity and traceability tools. The Agency's specialized expertise in food safety, as well as plant and animal health, contributes to the sector's ability to build robust assurance systems that are cornerstones of the agriculture and agri-food sector. At the same time, the Department will continue to work with industry partners through the Canadian Plant Health Council and the National Farmed Animal Health and Welfare Council to identify assurance tools to help advance plant and animal health priorities. Ongoing collaborative efforts in these areas will help prevent and mitigate the occurrence of food-and disease-related incidents and build public trust in Canada's agriculture and agri-food system.

Given the significant threat that African Swine Fever (ASF) continues to pose to the Canadian pork supply chain, federal, provincial, and territorial partners are supporting the government– industry Pan-Canadian ASF Action Plan, which will enable a timely and coordinated response to reduce the risk of an outbreak in Canada and, should an outbreak occur, support industry with a pan-Canadian coordinated, cooperative and prompt response to market challenges and disease eradication. This collaborative approach will help to reduce the possibility of African Swine Fever entering into Canada, through mechanisms such as the enforcement of border regulations on imports of pork products and feed ingredients. It will also allow for a strong and coordinated response, in the event that the disease is introduced to North America.

Together, efforts related to Sector Risk will help equip the sector for greater success by supporting the creation of assurance systems that underpin industry's ability to meet consumer and buyer demands and gain access to markets, while helping industry develop systems to safeguard plant and animal health.

In pursuing results within the Sector Risk core responsibility, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will also undertake efforts that align with Government of Canada commitments, such as inclusive outcomes for Canadians, sustainable development, and experimentation. The following outlines the Department's plans in these areas for 2021–22.

Gender-based analysis plus - Sector Risk

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is adapting programs and services to address barriers that underrepresented groups are facing in the agriculture and agri-food sector and to capitalize on opportunities that facilitate participation. For example, Business Risk Management program guidelines contain provisions to facilitate access for newer farmers who may not have sufficient capital or access to agricultural business knowledge, or Indigenous Peoples who may not have filed the necessary tax returns on which payments are based.

Enhancing access to Business Risk Management programs for underrepresented groups, including youth, women, Indigenous communities, persons with disabilities, and members of visible minorities continues to be a consideration for federal, provincial, and territorial governments, as work towards improving the suite of programs is ongoing. The Department will continue to explore ways to facilitate access to Business Risk Management programs, recognizing the importance of supporting underrepresented groups' participation in the sector.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, there is even greater need to ensure that Business Risk Management programs are providing the necessary support to women and other underrepresented groups, as initial analysis indicates that in general, impacts of the pandemic are being experienced disproportionately by women and visible minorities.

In 2021–22, the Department will work towards identifying the severity of COVID-19 impacts on women and other underrepresented groups in the agriculture and agri-food sector.

The United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's planned activities under the Sector Risk core responsibility support Canada's efforts to address the United Nations 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). For instance, AgriStability and AgriInsurance initiatives, part of the Business Risk Management programming suite under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, contribute towards:

Experimentation - Sector Risk

In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue exploring experimental approaches that enhance the delivery of risk management programs or lead to the building of new risk management tools. For example, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada launched a two year cash reference margin pilot for the 2020 and 2021 program years in jurisdictions where the Department delivers the AgriStability program (Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Yukon). The pilot makes it easier for new and returning participants to apply for benefits by reducing the amount of historical information they need to provide and to gauge existing producers' interest in having their reference margins based on the cash versus accrual basis going forward.

In addition, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada engaged with the Privy Council Office Fellowship Program in 2019–20 in the design of a nudge project for the “My AAFC” account portal to generate more interest and uptake in the portal. The focus for 2021–22 is to undertake a pilot project that will explore and examine how the “My AAFC” account portal could be used exclusively to communicate, submit requests, and receive program documents with the aim of replacing mailing out hard-copy documents to clients.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is also building capacity in experimentation through participation in Experimentation Works 2, a government-wide initiative to train public servants in experimentation. The Department's project focuses on better understanding consumer preferences for food products with sustainability-oriented assurance claims, helping to better inform assurance systems policy and understand issues of public trust. Through the identification of different experimentation methods and innovative policy research techniques, the Department is developing a research plan and identifying what experiments could be run in the future. The current exploration work is helping Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada employees build skills, knowledge and proof-of-concept models for further experimentation related to consumer engagement.

Key risks - Sector Risk

Agricultural producers face a number of risks that can threaten the viability of their operations, such as drought, flood, hail, declining international or regional commodity prices, increasing input costs, pests and diseases, and border closures. Under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership, the Department, along with provincial and territorial governments, will continue to provide a robust suite of Business Risk Management programs, as well as other federal or cost-shared programming, to help producers manage the impacts of these types of risks, protect their livelihood, and ultimately grow their businesses. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a number of unprecedented challenges for farmers, further emphasizing the need to improve Business Risk Management programs in the future. Improvements to programming both in the short and longer term will remain a priority for governments.

The Department continues to actively engage industry stakeholders, provincial and territorial governments, and other federal departments to enhance awareness of the benefits of emergency preparedness and planning, to share information related to key risks, and to develop best practices to mitigate the impacts of reportable diseases, such as African Swine Fever. The Department will continue working to enhance its capacity to respond to emergency events, and minimize the impacts of such events. Lessons learned from the recent and unparalleled event response against the COVID-19 pandemic will be applied in this effort to build capacity and mitigate future risk.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada continues to monitor the risk that long-standing labour challenges are compounded by COVID-19-related disruptions in 2021–22. Workers across the food supply chain – whether Canadian residents or temporary foreign workers – provide an essential service to Canada, and as a result labour will remain a key issue for the Department in 2021–22. Federal, provincial and territorial governments are committed to work with their respective ministries of labour to help ensure the continued availability of labour to support the agriculture and agri-food sector, and highlight the opportunities that exist for Canadians looking for work.

Planned results for Sector Risk
Departmental result Departmental result indicator Target Date to achieve target 2017–18
actual result
2018–19
actual result
2019–20
actual result
The agricultural sector is financially resilient Sector's income as a proportion of historical income

At least 85%

Sector income is maintained above the 85% threshold of five-year average income

March 2022[1] 104% Not available Not available
The agricultural sector is financially resilient Percentage of financially healthy farms

At least 90%

Percentage of financially healthy farms is maintained at least at 90%

March 2022[2]

90.7%

(based on data in the 2017 Farm Financial Survey

Not available

Not available

(results available in April 2021)

The agriculture and agri-food sector is equipped with assurance systems and supporting tools Percentage of implementation plans for assurance projects reported to be functioning Range between 65% and 85% March 2023[3] Not available Not available Not available

Note: For indicators introduced in 2018–19 as part of the transition to the Departmental Results Framework, past results have been sourced from publicly available data, where applicable. Actual results that are “not available” were not previously measured or reported prior to 2018–19 or are due to lag times in data availability, as noted below.

  1. The indicator demonstrates whether producers have been able to maintain their primary agriculture incomes, after accounting for Business Risk Management programs. A percentage above 100% indicates that the sector's current year income is above its recent five-year moving average. Indicator has a two-year lag time; 2019–20 results will be available in fall 2022.
  2. Indicator has a two-year lag time. Data is only available every two years, based on the Farm Financial Survey.
  3. Indicator has a lag time; actual results will be available in March 2023, due to the time required for participants to develop systems and for those systems to be taken up by the sector.
Planned budgetary financial resources for Sector Risk
2021–22 budgetary spending
(as indicated in Main Estimates)
2021–22
planned spending
2022–23
planned spending
2023–24
planned spending
1,546,409,618 1,546,409,618 1,550,158,289 717,008,265

Note: The decrease in planned spending in 2023–24 reflects the expiry of the current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and the funding amount is not yet determined.

Planned human resources for Sector Risk
2021–22
planned full-time equivalents
2022–23
planned full-time equivalents
2023–24
planned full-time equivalents
421 421 421

Note: The current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities expire at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and it is anticipated that full-time equivalents will remain stable.

Financial, human resources, and performance information for the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada program inventory is available in the GC InfoBase.

Responding to labour shortage risks resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated an existing labour shortage for many Canadian farmers, fish harvesters, and food production and processing employers. In 2018, almost 4,000 agricultural operations across Canada relied on temporary foreign workers to help address seasonal labour shortages and in 2019, approximately 60,000 jobs in the agriculture and agri-food sector were filled by temporary foreign workers. Travel restrictions and mandatory self-isolation, as a result of the pandemic, presented a risk that many temporary foreign workers would be unable or unwilling to come to Canada for work in 2020. To enable employers to continue to use the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, travel ban exemptions facilitated the entry of temporary foreign workers into Canada, but the mandatory 14-day isolation requirement presented an additional challenge to employers who were required to transport, house, feed and pay wages for these workers.

To address the short-term labour pressures related to COVID-19, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada provided $84 million in 2020–21 to employers across food production sectors including primary agriculture, food processing, fisheries and aquaculture through the Mandatory Isolation Support for Temporary Foreign Workers Program (under the Sector Risk core responsibility). While beyond the normal financial risk tools of the department, this program provided support to ensure that producers and processors were able to hire temporary foreign workers, despite the incremental costs associated with COVID-19 requirements, and ultimately supporting the Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector to be better equipped to continue producing food at close to normal levels.

As part of the Youth Employment and Skills Strategy, the Department delivers the Youth Employment and Skills Program (under the Domestic and International Markets core responsibility), which provides a wage subsidy to employers who hire youth for agricultural jobs. The program gives young Canadians, particularly youth facing barriers, the opportunity to participate in the work force, to gain critical work experience, knowledge and skills. Additional funding of $9.2 million was made available through this program in 2020–21, to assist in the creation of approximately 1,000 jobs for youth in the agriculture sector.

In addition, the Department delivered other programs and initiatives in 2020–21 to support the sector in response to the COVID-19 pandemic such as the Emergency Processing Fund and the Emergency On-Farm Support Fund (both under the Science and Innovation core responsibility). Together these programs helped producers and processors to manage risks outside of their control and respond to the challenges of the pandemic, and supported the overall resilience of the agriculture and agri-food sector.

As the COVID-19 situation evolves in 2021–22, the Department will continue to assess where support may be needed in the agriculture and agri-food sector and build on measures introduced since the beginning of the pandemic to support producers and food processors, whether this includes efforts to ensure the safe arrival of Temporary Foreign Workers into Canada, the prompt sharing of relevant data among government partners, or other initiatives to address labour shortages and other risks posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Internal Services: planned results

Description: Internal Services are those groups of related activities and resources that the federal government considers to be services in support of programs and/or required to meet corporate obligations of an organization. Internal Services refers to the activities and resources of the 10 distinct services that support program delivery in the organization, regardless of the Internal Services delivery model in a department. These services are:

Planning highlights - Internal Services

In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will undertake internal service initiatives, including those described below, that support the Department's mandate and strengthen its capacity to deliver results to Canadians.

Responding to the COVID-19 pandemic

As with many workplaces across the country, many Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada employees transitioned to a remote work environment beginning in March 2020 at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Employees adjusted quickly to deliver critical programs and services, and departmental functions and processes were adapted over the initial months of the pandemic. Information technology support and services were rapidly upgraded to facilitate this new working environment.

Over the course of the 2020–21 year, the Department continued to manage facilities where critical services were required, and implement safety assessments that allowed the gradual and partial reopening of some departmental workplaces. In particular, the Department's Research and Development Centres across the country were able to reintegrate a portion of their employees back to laboratories to resume research projects.

Looking ahead to 2021–22, the Department will continue to support a remote work environment as needed. The Department established clear guidelines to evaluate any return to the workplace, whether offices or laboratory facilities, and will continue to follow these criteria in reopening departmental facilities and worksites across the country, in accordance with local public health guidance, to ensure the health and safety of all Agriculture and Agri-Food employees. The Department will continue to provide employees with modern tools to support working remotely while also implementing steps towards more digital operations, including the development of a Digital Operations Strategic Plan.

Prioritizing wellness, diversity, and inclusion in our workforce and workplaces

Fostering a healthy workp lace that is inclusive, respectful, and harassment-free remains a priority for Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. The Department aims to be an employer that is diverse in representation, and respectful and inclusive in its employment policies and practices.

Recent events in Canada and around the world serve as a reminder that racism and discrimination are not new issues. The Department continues to build on the strategic objectives outlined in its Diversity and Inclusion Plan to increase representation, create an inclusive workplace, and enhance leadership, accountability, and monitoring. The Department is working to improve the organizational culture by increasing awareness and by engaging employees, including our Diversity and Inclusion Networks, in a dialogue around how to increase inclusion and eliminate discrimination. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is taking concrete actions to overcome unconscious biases and barriers for equity-seeking groups and will drive to achieve measurable change to advance our diversity and inclusion objectives.

For example, all departmental executives are undertaking unconscious bias and inclusive leadership training to ensure they have the knowledge and resources to drive culture change. The Department is continuing to ensure managers have the tools and resources they need to identify opportunities to increase representation.

The Department is continuing to ensure managers have the tools and resources they need to identify opportunities to increase representation. The Department will also undertake a comprehensive review of its employment systems (i.e., recruitment, staffing, promotion) to identify barriers for equity-seeking groups and instances of unconscious bias in our employment practices and processes. We will continue to implement initiatives, such as creating an inventory of diverse assessment board members, to help eliminate these barriers and biases and ensure equal access to opportunities for all.

In support of broader government initiatives, the Department will continue its efforts to entrench workplace wellness into its organizational culture, practices, and processes. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue its efforts to ensure a workplace where mental health is addressed constructively and openly. The Department will work to address challenges, grow awareness, and enable positive behaviours to reduce stigma, build up support capacities, and foster cultural change. Through the Department's Workplace Well-Being Ombudsperson and other ongoing initiatives, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada is committed to addressing issues of harassment, discrimination and ensuring employee well-being. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department continues to offer access to wellness initiatives to support employees in dealing with stress and other mental health impacts of the pandemic.

Supporting employees dealing with pay issues remains a top priority at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. The Department's ongoing efforts are focused on ensuring pay continuity, addressing outstanding pay cases and promoting open and transparent communication with employees and managers.

Supporting Indigenous initiatives

In 2021–22, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will continue to implement an integrated approach to coordinate Indigenous agriculture policy and program initiatives within the Department and among other government departments. The Department will continue to develop analysis and advice on Indigenous agriculture issues to inform key departmental policy initiatives, such as the Food Policy for Canada and the next agricultural policy framework.

The Indigenous Support and Awareness Office at Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada continues to advance the Indigenous Student Recruitment Initiative, the Indigenous Awareness Learning Services, and the Indigenous Network Circle. While activities and training have been modified more recently due to the COVID-19 pandemic, these initiatives will continue in 2021–22 through virtual tools and platforms to maintain the Department's outreach to Indigenous communities and organizations.

The Indigenous Student Recruitment Initiative, implemented since 2016, continues to build awareness and support the Indigenous student experience, while facilitating the integration of Indigenous students into careers within the Federal Government. The Indigenous Awareness Learning Series was established in response to the Truth and Reconciliation Call to Action #57 to provide education to public servants on the history of Aboriginal peoples. The training is delivered to Agriculture and Agri-Food employees by Indigenous staff working collaboratively with Elders to provide first-hand knowledge and experience. Training sessions cover cultural awareness or more tailored topics, and work continues to develop a wholesome training curriculum in the Department. Agriculture and Agri-Food's Indigenous Network Circle supports all Indigenous employees and students in the Department, and provides a platform for enhanced awareness and appreciation of Indigenous Peoples and culture.

Managing departmental assets and real property

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada works to ensure the sound management of its assets, such as buildings, land, and equipment, in order to meet operational requirements and to deliver quality programs and services to Canadians. The Department continues to work in collaboration with other science departments and Laboratories Canada (formerly the Federal Science and Technology Infrastructure Initiative) to modernize agriculture science and technology infrastructure in support of Government of Canada commitments to build a stronger, more sustainable, and more collaborative federal science and technology community.

In 2021–22, the Department will continue to improve the sustainable management of real property under its stewardship, based on recommendations resulting from a horizontal fixed asset review from 2017 to 2020, and in efforts towards achieving a sustainable 25-year real property strategy. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will also continue to implement the Greening Government Strategy, with a focus on meeting the federal government greenhouse gas reduction target of 40 percent by 2030.

Strengthening service delivery and transparency

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada will work towards achieving the vision of a digital government that is able to seamlessly deliver quality programs and services that are client-driven, digitally enabled, inclusive and accessible. The Department will continue to accelerate its digital transformation in order to meet stakeholders' expectations while optimizing value, ensuring transparency, as well as the ability to adapt quickly to changing needs and the evolving pandemic impacts. Targeted investments in digital technology and training/skill development will help to modernize how the Department supports its internal capacity to better serve stakeholders across the sector. Activities in 2021–22 will include:

Planned budgetary financial resources for Internal Services
2021–22 budgetary spending
(as indicated in Main Estimates)
2021–22
planned spending
2022–23
planned spending
2023–24
planned spending
156,366,349 156,366,349 155,083,368 127,165,827

Note: The decrease in planned spending in 2023–24 reflects the expiry of the current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and the funding amount is not yet determined.

Planned human resources for Internal Services
2021–22
planned full-time equivalents
2022–23
planned full-time equivalents
2023–24
planned full-time equivalents
1,332 1,332 1,332

Note: The current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities expire at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and it is anticipated that full-time equivalents will remain stable.

Spending and human resources

This section provides an overview of the Department's planned spending and human resources for the next three consecutive fiscal years, and compares planned spending for the upcoming year with the current and previous years' actual spending.

Planned spending

Departmental spending 2018–19 to 2023–24

The following graph presents planned (voted and statutory) spending over time

Departmental spending 2018–19 to 2023–24

Description of this image follows.

Description of the above image
2018–19[1] 2019–20[1] 2020–21[2] 2021–22[3] 2022–23[3] 2023–24[3]
Statutory 1,134 1,487 2,222 1,961 1,964 755
Voted 1,024 1,081 1,265 1,062 967 485
Total 2,158 2,568 3,486 3,023 2,931 1,240

1. Spending for 2018–19 and 2019–20 represents the actual expenditures incurred during the respective fiscal year, as reported in Public Accounts.

2. Spending for 2020–21 reflects the authorized funding levels to the end of the fiscal year.

3. Spending for 2021–22, 2022–23 and 2023–24 reflects funds already brought into the Department's reference levels, as well as amounts to be authorized through the Estimates process as presented in the Department's Annual Reference Level Update. It has not been adjusted to include new information contained in Budget 2021. More information will be provided in the 2021–22 Supplementary Estimates, as applicable.

Over the period 2018–19 to 2023–24, spending varies from a high of $3.5 billion forecast for 2020–21 to a low of $1.2 billion planned for 2023–24. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's programs and initiatives vary from year to year in response to changes affecting the agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector, as outlined below.

Forecast spending in 2020–21 is higher as it reflects emergency support in response to COVID-19, increased support forecast for Business Risk Management programs, mainly the AgriStability and AgriRecovery programs, increased funding for the Dairy Direct Payment Program and funding carried forward from the previous year.

Planned spending in 2022–23 is lower mainly due to the expiry of the Dairy Farm Investment Program and the Dairy Processing Investment Fund at the end of 2021–22.

The decrease in 2023–24 reflects that funding authorities will need to be renewed for the current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, in consultation with provinces and territories, continues to develop a successor to the Canadian Agricultural Partnership policy framework to position the industry to meet challenges in the decade ahead. The decrease also reflects the expiry of the current Dairy Direct Payment Program.

Budgetary planning summary for core responsibilities and Internal Services (dollars)

The following table shows actual, forecast, and planned spending for each of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's core responsibilities and Internal Services for the years relevant to the current planning year.

Budgetary planning summary for core responsibilities and Internal Services (dollars)
Core responsibilities and Internal Services 2018–19
expenditures
2019–20
expenditures
2020–21
forecast spending [1]
2021–22
budgetary spending
(as indicated in Main Estimates)
2021–22
planned spending[2]
2022–23
planned spending[2]
2023–24
planned spending[2]
Domestic and International Markets 280,684,647 622,424,048 938,634,644 705,003,048 705,003,048 651,080,857 67,861,907
Science and Innovation 560,826,128 590,348,161 749,555,250 615,035,822 615,035,822 574,942,432 328,059,976
Sector Risk 1,145,612,636 1,177,946,837 1,619,257,872 1,546,409,618 1,546,409,618 1,550,158,289 717,008,265
Subtotal 1,987,123,411 2,390,719,046 3,307,447,766 2,866,448,488 2,866,448,488 2,776,181,578 1,112,930,148
Internal Services 170,822,226 177,211,477 178,977,697 156,366,349 156,366,349 155,083,368 127,165,827
Total 2,157,945,637 2,567,930,523 3,486,425,463 3,022,814,837 3,022,814,837 2,931,264,946 1,240,095,975
  1. Forecast spending reflects the authorized funding levels to the end of the fiscal year (not necessarily forecast expenditures).
  2. Planned spending reflects funds already brought into the Department's reference levels as well as amounts to be authorized through the Estimates process as presented in the Department's Annual Reference Level Update. Planned spending has not been adjusted to include new information contained in Budget 2021. More information will be provided in the 2021–22 Supplementary Estimates, as applicable.

Note: Please refer to the explanatory note under the Departmental spending 2018–19 to 2023–24 for further details of financial trends.

Planned human resources

The following table shows actual, forecast, and planned full-time equivalents (FTEs) for each core responsibility in Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's departmental results framework and to Internal Services for the years relevant to the current planning year.

Human resources planning summary for core responsibilities and Internal Services
Core responsibilities and Internal Services 2018–19
actual
full-time
equivalents
2019–20
actual
full-time
equivalents
2020–21
forecast
full-time
equivalents
2021–22
planned
full-time
equivalents
2022–23
planned
full-time
equivalents
2023–24
planned
full-time
equivalents
Domestic and International Markets 517 519 534 515 491 491
Science and Innovation 2,633 2,650 2,639 2,635 2,606 2,606
Sector Risk 442 443 421 421 421 421
Subtotal 3,592 3,612 3,594 3,571 3,518 3,518
Internal Services 1,124 1,219 1,332 1,332 1,332 1,332
Total 4,716 4,831 4,926 4,903 4,850 4,850

Note: Full-time equivalents reflect only those funded through the Department's appropriated resources. For example, in 2019–20, in addition to the actual full-time equivalents of 4,831, there were 57 full-time equivalents employed by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada for research funded through collaborative agreements with industry partners and 507 full-time equivalents were employed as students.

The increase in full-time equivalents from 2018–20 to 2020–21 is due to staffing required to support research priorities, including the Advancing Agricultural Discovery Science and Innovation Initiative as announced in Budget 2017, as well as to support service delivery improvements and modernization of agriculture science and technology initiatives, and the Food Policy for Canada, as announced in Budget 2019.

The decreases in planned full-time equivalents starting in 2021–22 are due to the expiry of the Agricultural Clean Technology program at the end of 2020–21, the expiry of the Dairy Farm Investment Program and the Dairy Processing Investment Fund at the end of 2021–22 and the expiry of the funding for genomics, digitization and data mobilization of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada biological collections at the end of 2021–22.

The current five-year Canadian Agricultural Partnership funding authorities expire at the end of 2022–23. A successor policy framework is being developed and it is anticipated that full-time equivalents will remain stable.

Estimates by vote

Information on Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's organizational appropriations is available in the 2021–22 Main Estimates.

Future-oriented Condensed statement of operations

The future-oriented condensed statement of operations provides an overview of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's operations for 2020–21 to 2021–22. The amounts for forecast and planned results in this statement of operations were prepared on an accrual basis. The amounts for forecast and planned spending presented in other sections of the Departmental Plan were prepared on an expenditure basis. Amounts may therefore differ. A more detailed future-oriented statement of operations and associated notes, including a reconciliation of the net cost of operations to the requested authorities, are available on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada website.

Future-oriented Condensed statement of operations for the year ending March 31, 2022 (dollars)
Financial information 2020–21
forecast results
2021–22
planned results
Difference
(2021–22 planned
results minus 2020–21
forecast results)
Total expenses 3,316,010,940 3,090,785,458 (225,225,482)
Total revenues 49,898,040 58,788,193 8,890,153
Net cost of operations before government funding and transfers 3,266,112,900 3,031,997,265 (234,115,635)

The net cost of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's operations is projected to be $3.0 billion in 2021–22, an expected decrease of $234.1 million compared to 2020–21 forecast results. The decrease is mainly attributable to the emergency support programming in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020–21, which are reflected in the Domestic and International Markets, Science and Innovation, and Sector Risk core responsibilities. The decrease is partly offset by an increase in planned spending in Sector Risk mainly due to Business Risk Management programs based on full authorized funding levels for demand driven statutory programs which may or may not materialize depending on market conditions.

Total expenses are projected to be $3.1 billion in 2021‒22. The majority of these expenses are in the form of transfer payments in Sector Risk (49.6% or $1.5 billion). Other expenses include $711.2 million (23.0% of total expenses) in Domestic and International Markets, $585.0 million (18.9% of total expenses) in Science and Innovation, and $261.6 million (8.5% of total expenses) in Internal Services.

Total revenues are projected to be $58.8 million in 2021–22, an expected increase of $8.9 million comparing to 2020–21 forecasted results. The increase is mainly due to lower than anticipated revenues in 2020–21, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Corporate information

Organizational profile

Appropriate minister: The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau
Institutional head: Chris Forbes, Deputy Minister
Ministerial portfolio: Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
Enabling instrument: Department of Agriculture and Agri-Food Act,
(R.S.C. 1985, c. A-9)

Year of incorporation / commencement: 1994

Raison d'être, mandate and role: who we are and what we do

Raison d'être, mandate and role: who we are and what we do” is available on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada website.

For more information on the Department's organizational mandate letter commitments, see the Minister's mandate letter.

Operating context

Information on the operating context is available on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada website.

Reporting framework

The Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada approved departmental results framework and program inventory for 2021–22 are as follows.

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Departmental Results Framework
Domestic and International Markets Science and Innovation Sector Risk Internal Services
Core Responsibilities AAFC provides programs and services and works in collaboration with the sector to support its competitiveness at home and abroad. AAFC also works to increase opportunities for the sector to export its products by maintaining and expanding market access and advancing agricultural interests internationally. AAFC conducts scientific research, develops new knowledge and new technologies, and transfers the results to the agriculture and agri-food sector.
AAFC also works with industry and other partners to strengthen the sector's capacity to develop and adopt innovative practices, products, and processes.
AAFC provides tools to mitigate the financial impact of risks beyond producers' control that threaten the viability of their operation. AAFC also works with the sector to ensure that systems, standards, and tools are developed to support its ability to prevent and control risks and address market demands.
Results The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector contributes to growing the economy Access to international markets is increased by resolving or mitigating market barriers and advancing trade positions The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector knowledge base is increased through AAFC supported scientific and innovative research The Canadian agriculture and agri-food sector is effective in transforming ideas into new products, processes, or practices The agricultural sector is financially resilient The agriculture and agri-food sector is equipped with assurance systems and supporting tools
Indicators
  • Percentage change in the economic performance of the agriculture and agri-food sector
  • Percentage change in agri-food products sold
  • Value of agriculture and agri-food exports
  • Degree to which AAFC advances the resolution or the mitigation of market access barriers, World Trade Organization disputes, and technical trade issues
  • Degree to which AAFC advances trade policy through negotiations, agreements, and discussions
  • Percentage of AAFC scientific publications produced through collaboration
  • Number of citations as a proportion of AAFC scientific publications
  • Number of new technologies, products, practices, processes, or systems that are available for transfer to the sector
  • Percentage of revenues generated on farms adopting innovative practices
  • Percentage of processors developing and/or introducing innovations
  • Index of Agri-Environmental Sustainability (water, soil, air quality, biodiversity)
  • Percentage change in the productivity of the agriculture and agri-food sector
  • Sector's income as a proportion of historical income
  • Percentage of financially healthy farms
  • Percentage of implementation plans for assurance projects reported to be functioning
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Program Inventory (2021–22)
Domestic and International Markets Science and Innovation Sector Risk Internal Services
Programs
  • Trade and Market Expansion
  • Sector Engagement and Development
  • Farm Products Council of Canada
  • Dairy Programs
  • Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency
  • Food Policy Initiatives
  • Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Markets and Trade
  • Foundational Science and Research
  • AgriScience
  • AgriInnovate
  • Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program
  • Canadian Agricultural Strategic Priorities Program
  • Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Science, Research, Innovation and Environment
  • AgriStability
  • AgriInsurance
  • AgriRisk
  • AgriInvest
  • AgriRecovery
  • Loan Guarantee Programs
  • Farm Debt Mediation Service
  • Pest Management
  • Assurance Program
  • Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Assurance
  • Return of Payments
  • Management and Oversight Services
  • Communication Services
  • Legal Services
  • Human Resources Management Services
  • Financial Management Services
  • Information Management Services
  • Information Technology Services
  • Real Property Services
  • Material Services
  • Acquisition Services

Note: the Mandatory Isolation Support for Temporary Foreign Workers Program was added to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Program Inventory under the Sector Risk core responsibility for 2020–21.

Changes to the approved reporting framework since 2020–21

Core Responsibility: Domestic and International Markets - Programs
2021–22 2020–21 Change Reason for change
Trade and Market Expansion Trade and Market Expansion No change Not applicable
Sector Engagement and Development Sector Engagement and Development No change Not applicable
Farm Products Council of Canada Farm Products Council of Canada No change Not applicable
Dairy Programs Dairy Programs No change Not applicable
Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency Canadian Pari-Mutuel Agency No change Not applicable
Not applicable Water Infrastructure Program Ended Note 1
Food Policy Initiatives Food Policy Initiatives No change Not applicable
Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Markets and Trade Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Markets and Trade No change Not applicable
Note 1: The Water Infrastructure program was removed from the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada program inventory in 2020–21, as the Department transferred ownership and operational responsibility of this program to the Saskatchewan Water Security Agency.
Core Responsibility: Science and Innovation - Programs
2021–22 2020–21 Change Reason for change
Foundational Science and Research Foundational Science and Research No change Not applicable
AgriScience AgriScience No change Not applicable
AgriInnovate AgriInnovate No change Not applicable
Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program Agricultural Greenhouse Gases Program No change Not applicable
Canadian Agricultural Strategic Priorities Program Canadian Agricultural Strategic Priorities Program No change Not applicable
Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Science, Research, Innovation, and Environment Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Science, Research, Innovation, and Environment No change Not applicable
Core Responsibility: Sector Risk - Programs
2021–22 2020–21 Change Reason for change
AgriStability AgriStability No change Not applicable
AgriInsurance AgriInsurance No change Not applicable
AgriRisk AgriRisk No change Not applicable
AgriInvest AgriInvest No change Not applicable
AgriRecovery AgriRecovery No change Not applicable
Loan Guarantee Programs Loan Guarantee Programs No change Not applicable
Farm Debt Mediation Service Farm Debt Mediation Service No change Not applicable
Pest Management Pest Management No change Not applicable
Assurance Program Assurance Program No change Not applicable
Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Assurance Federal, Provincial, and Territorial Cost-shared Assurance No change Not applicable
Return of Payments Return of Payments No change Not applicable

Supporting information on the program inventory

Supporting information on planned expenditures, human resources, and results related to the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada program inventory is available in the GC InfoBase.

Supplementary information tables

The following supplementary information tables are available on the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada website:

Federal tax expenditures

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's Departmental Plan does not include information on tax expenditures that related to its planned results for 2021–22.

Tax expenditures are the responsibility of the Minister of Finance, and the Department of Finance Canada publishes cost estimates and projections for government-wide tax expenditures each year in the Report on Tax Expenditures. This report provides detailed information on tax expenditures, including objectives, historical background, and references to related federal spending programs, as well as evaluations, research papers, and gender-based analysis. The tax measures presented in this report are solely the responsibility of the Minister of Finance.

Organizational contact information

Mailing address:

Public Information Requests Services
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada
1341 Baseline Road
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0C5

Telephone: 613-773-1000
Toll-free: 1-855-773-0241
Fax: 613-773-1081

Telecommunications Device for the Deaf/Teletype: 613-773-2600
Email: info@agr.gc.ca
Website: www.agr.gc.ca

Appendix: definitions

appropriation (crédit)
Any authority of Parliament to pay money out of the Consolidated Revenue Fund.
budgetary expenditures (dépenses budgétaires)
Operating and capital expenditures; transfer payments to other levels of government, organizations or individuals; and payments to Crown corporations.
core responsibility (responsabilité essentielle)
An enduring function or role performed by a department. The intentions of the department with respect to a core responsibility are reflected in one or more related departmental results that the department seeks to contribute to or influence.
Departmental Plan (Plan ministériel)
A report on the plans and expected performance of a department over a 3-year period. Departmental Plans are tabled in Parliament each spring.
departmental priority (priorité ministérielle)
A plan or project that a department has chosen to focus and report on during the planning period. Departmental priorities represent the things that are most important or what must be done first to support the achievement of the desired departmental results.
departmental result (résultat ministériel)
A consequence or outcome that a department seeks to achieve. A departmental result is often outside departments' immediate control, but it should be influenced by program-level outcomes.
departmental result indicator (indicateur de résultat ministériel)
A factor or variable that provides a valid and reliable means to measure or describe progress on a departmental result.
departmental results framework (cadre ministériel des résultats)
A framework that consists of the department's core responsibilities, departmental results and departmental result indicators.
Departmental Results Report (Rapport sur les résultats ministériels)
A report on a department's actual accomplishments against the plans, priorities and expected results set out in the corresponding Departmental Plan.
experimentation (expérimentation)
The conducting of activities that seek to first explore, then test and compare, the effects and impacts of policies and interventions in order to inform evidence-based decision-making, and improve outcomes for Canadians, by learning what works and what doesn't. Experimentation is related to, but distinct form innovation (the trying of new things), because it involves a rigorous comparison of results. For example, using a new website to communicate with Canadians can be an innovation; systematically testing the new website against existing outreach tools or an old website to see which one leads to more engagement, is experimentation.
full-time equivalent (équivalent temps plein)
A measure of the extent to which an employee represents a full person-year charge against a departmental budget. Full-time equivalents are calculated as a ratio of assigned hours of work to scheduled hours of work. Scheduled hours of work are set out in collective agreements.
gender-based analysis plus (GBA+) (analyse comparative entre les sexes plus [ACS+])
An analytical process used to assess how diverse groups of women, men and gender-diverse people experience policies, programs and services based on multiple factors including race, ethnicity, religion, age, and mental or physical disability.
government-wide priorities (priorités pangouvernementales)
For the purpose of the 2021–22 Departmental Plan, government-wide priorities refers to those high-level themes outlining the government's agenda in the 2020 Speech from the Throne, namely: Protecting Canadians from COVID-19; Helping Canadians through the pandemic; Building back better – a resiliency agenda for the middle class; The Canada we're fighting for.
horizontal initiative (initiative horizontale)
An initiative in which two or more federal organizations are given funding to pursue a shared outcome, often linked to a government priority.
non-budgetary expenditures (dépenses non budgétaires)
Net outlays and receipts related to loans, investments and advances, which change the composition of the financial assets of the Government of Canada.
performance (rendement)
What an organization did with its resources to achieve its results, how well those results compare to what the organization intended to achieve, and how well lessons learned have been identified.
performance indicator (indicateur de rendement)
A qualitative or quantitative means of measuring an output or outcome, with the intention of gauging the performance of an organization, program, policy or initiative respecting expected results.
performance reporting (production de rapports sur le rendement)
The process of communicating evidence-based performance information. Performance reporting supports decision-making, accountability and transparency.
plan (plan)
The articulation of strategic choices, which provides information on how an organization intends to achieve its priorities and associated results. Generally a plan will explain the logic behind the strategies chosen and tend to focus on actions that lead up to the expected result.
planned spending (dépenses prévues)

For Departmental Plans and Departmental Results Reports, planned spending refers to those amounts presented in the Main Estimates.

A department is expected to be aware of the authorities that it has sought and received. The determination of planned spending is a departmental responsibility, and departments must be able to defend the expenditure and accrual numbers presented in their Departmental Plans and Departmental Results Reports.

program (programme)
Individual or groups of services, activities or combinations thereof that are managed together within the department and focus on a specific set of outputs, outcomes or service levels.
program inventory (répertoire des programmes)
Identifies all of the department's programs and describes how resources are organized to contribute to the department's core responsibilities and results.
result (résultat)
An external consequence attributed, in part, to an organization, policy, program or initiative. Results are not within the control of a single organization, policy, program or initiative; instead they are within the area of the organization's influence.
statutory expenditures (dépenses législatives)
Expenditures that Parliament has approved through legislation other than appropriation acts. The legislation sets out the purpose of the expenditures and the terms and conditions under which they may be made.
strategic outcome (résultat stratégique)
A long-term and enduring benefit to Canadians that is linked to the organization's mandate, vision and core functions.
target (cible)
A measurable performance or success level that an organization, program or initiative plans to achieve within a specified time period. Targets can be either quantitative or qualitative.
voted expenditures (dépenses votées)
Expenditures that Parliament approves annually through an Appropriation Act. The vote wording becomes the governing conditions under which these expenditures may be made.
Report a problem on this page
Please select all that apply:

Date modified: