The farm-gate value of Canadian fruit and vegetable products rose 7.4% from 2015 to $2.2 billion in 2016, according to Statistics Canada. Favourable weather conditions resulted in increased production, which contributed mainly to this growth.
Norfolk County is a leading growing region of fruit and vegetables in Canada. Norfolk County farmers are the nation’s Number One growers of asparagus, cabbage, ginseng, peppers, pumpkin, sour cherries, strawberries and sweet corn. Norfolk County is Ontario’s leading growing region of blueberries.
After passing the $1-billion mark in 2015, the value of vegetables grown across Canada continued to grow in 2016, up 7.6% to $1.2 billion. Carrots, tomatoes, lettuce, dry onions, sweet corn, broccoli and peppers accounted for more than 50% of the total value of field-grown vegetables in Canada.Carrot sales amounted to $122.9 million in 2016, followed by tomatoes ($111.6 million), lettuce ($88.1 million), dry onions ($87.1 million) and sweet corn ($75.6 million).
The total value of fruits rose 7.1% to exceed the $1-billion mark for the first time in 2016.
High bush blueberry production rose 6.4% to 85 769 tonnes, but the value decreased by 0.1% to $170.8 million. British Columbia production represented 95.6% of total high bush blueberry production in Canada.
In 2016, apple sales represented about one-fifth of the total national fruit value. The overall apple yield in Canada increased 13.9%, mainly because Ontario recovered from a 15.8% production decrease in 2015, which was due to winter damage and a late spring frost. Ontario represented 38.8% of total apple production volumes in 2016.
Total grape value increased 24.5% to $151.1 million. Favourable weather conditions contributed to higher yields in different wine-producing regions of Canada. Ontario (57.2%) accounted for the largest share of the total grape value.
Higher values were reported for strawberries (+7.1%) and raspberries (+9.7%).