Where Investment Thrives

Agriculture and Agri-Food

Industry Profile

Agriculture and Agri-Food

Alberta’s agriculture and agri-foods industry is foundational to the province’s strong, diversified economy.

Alberta offers investors a welcoming business climate, as well as abundant, high-quality agricultural raw material at a competitive cost. There are reliable transportation links to world markets, in addition to innovative research and development capabilities.

Alberta, where agriculture and agri-food thrive


Abundant supply of raw materials at a competitive cost


World-class R&D. More than 22 research and innovation facilities in the province are specializing in crops and cereals, poultry and swine, agronomy, biomaterials and food safety


A global reputation for safe, high-quality agriculture and agri-food products


Why Alberta

Maximize your return on investment

  • A business-friendly regulatory climate
  • One of the most competitive business tax regimes in Canada. No provincial sales tax, provincial capital taxes, or payroll taxes
  • Alberta businesses pay at least $11.2 billion less in total taxes compared to any other Canadian jurisdiction

Connect to the world

  • Canada has preferred market access to 51 countries representing approximately 1.5 billion consumers and over U.S. $49.3 trillion or 67 per cent of global GDP
  • Canada's market access is supported by a reliable and efficient transportation systems

Get the support you need to succeed

  • Access to a variety of federal and provincial government programs


Areas of Expertise

Alberta’s food processors are active in a range of areas including:

  • Canola and oilseed milling,
  • Vegetable processing,
  • Meat and specialty meat manufacturing,
  • Snack foods, functional foods,
  • Natural health products and beverages, and 
  • Pulse processing

Alberta is a leader in pulse production, which have been identified as a sustainable and affordable source of plant-based protein by the United Nations. The province is an ideal place to grow pulses because it has an ideal mix of warm days and cool nights, lots of sunshine, few diseases or pests and extensive irrigation infrastructure.

Alberta is responsible for one-third of Canada’s pulses production, including dry peas, beans, faba beans and lentils.


Research and Development

Alberta’s Food Processing Development Centre and Agrivalue Processing Business Incubator facilities are unique to Canada.

More than 22 research and innovation facilities in the province specialize in crops and cereals, poultry and swine, agronomy, biomaterials and food safety.

Alberta has generous tax incentives for groups who conduct research and development.


Key Stats

Alberta offers a high-quality supply of primary products and is the third largest exporter of agri-food products in Canada. In 2017:

  • Alberta exports of primary and processed agricultural and food products totaled $11.2 billion.
  • Alberta produced 33 per cent of Canadian wheat, 32 per cent of canola, nearly half of the nation’s barley, and 16 per cent of Canada’s oats.
  • Alberta led the nation in cattle and calf inventory, accounting for more than 40 per cent of Canada’s total.
  • Alberta’s agri-food industries employed 75,100 Albertans: 52,100 in primary agriculture and 23,000 in food and beverage.

Alberta's food and beverage processing industry was the second largest manufacturing employer in the province in 2017, employing 23,000 people, and accounting for $14.4 billion in manufacturing sales.

Business Support Programs

Canadian Agricultural Partnership - https://cap.alberta.ca/CAP/
CAP is a five-year, $3 billion federal-provincial-territorial investment in the agriculture, agri-food and agri-based products sector set to begin in April 2018, and is the successor of the 2013-18 Growing Forward 2 partnership.

Farm Energy and Agri-Processing Program (FEAP) - https://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/general/progserv.nsf/all/pgmsrv462
The program provides grants on a cost-shared, reimbursement basis to support investments in high-energy efficiency equipment.

Agriculture Financial Service Corporation - https://www.afsc.ca/
AFSC provides producers, agribusinesses and other small businesses loans, crop insurance and farm income disaster assistance.

Business, Non-profit, and Institutional Energy Savings Program - https://www.efficiencyalberta.ca/business-non-profit-and-institutional/
The program offers incentives to encourage organizations to choose high-efficiency products.

Workforce Development Program - http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/general/progserv.nsf/all/pgmsrv338
The program provides assistance to address specific workforce issues in agricultural production and agri-processing activities.

Canada-Alberta Jobs Grant (CAJG) - https://www.alberta.ca/canada-alberta-job-grant.aspx
CAJG is an employer-driven training program where employers and government share the cost of training new and existing employees.

Strategic Innovation Fund - Federal - https://www.canada.ca/en/innovation-science-economic-development/programs/strategic-innovation-fund.html
This program allocates repayable and non-repayable contributions to firms of all sizes across all of Canada's industrial and technology sectors.

Related Content


Alberta Agriculture and Forestry - http://www1.agric.gov.ab.ca/$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/trade11186
The Government of Alberta’s Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry provides information about importing and exporting agriculture and food products.


Agriculture Financial Service Corporation - https://www.afsc.ca/
AFSC provides producers, agribusinesses and other small businesses loans, crop insurance and farm income disaster assistance.


Canadian Trade Commissioner Service - http://tradecommissioner.gc.ca/index.aspx
As part of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada, the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service helps Canadian companies and organizations succeed globally.


Invest in Canada - http://www.investcanada.ca/
Invest in Canada is a federal investment promotion agency aimed at facilitating global business investment to spur job growth in Canada.


Alberta Unbound: Research and Innovation Opportunities in Alberta’s Food Sector - https://albertainnovates.ca/wp-content/uploads/2017/11/Conference_Board_-_Alberta_Unbound__2013-10-17__final_report.pdf
In this report, Alberta Innovates Bio Solutions seeks to identify strategic opportunities for future research and innovation investments that would generate value for the province.


Agri-Food Export Catalogue - https://open.alberta.ca/dataset/d9d76bbb-b9de-429b-b8a8-d0ec5496ad08/resource/523b227b-1b7b-480a-8f09-97875cebf507/download/2019-export-catalogue-web.pdf
Find agriculture and food products and services from Alberta, Canada. This catalogue was designed for international importers, distributors or buyers located outside of Canada.


Connect with Alberta Agriculture and Forestry to maximize your investment through:

  • Site location assistance,
  • Information on Alberta’s tax, employment and business regulations, and
  • Connecting with appropriate provincial and federal business development programs.

For Investment Services

Mario Orellana, Investment Officer
E-mail: mario.orellana@gov.ab.ca
Telephone: 780-422-7887


Events Calendar

You are looking at {{EventTypeFilterPostfix}} that are about
taking place {{LocationTypeFilterPrefix}}
{{eventItem.EventDetails.EventLocation1.City}}, {{eventItem.EventDetails.EventLocation1.Country}}
{{eventItem.EventDetails.EventLocation1.City}}, {{eventItem.EventDetails.EventLocation1.Country}}