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Alberta Solid Overall Performer on The Conference Board of Canada’s Food Report Card

Ottawa, May 18, 2017—Alberta clinches a top three rank on household food security, and records a solid performance overall on The Conference Board of Canada’s first provincial food report card assessing the performance of their food systems and food sectors. Canada’s Food Report Card: Provincial Performance presents data and analysis on five categories: industry prosperity, healthy food and diets, food safety, household food security, and environmental sustainability.

“While most provinces in Canada receive “D” grades on at least one category, Alberta’s grades of “C” and higher are a product of its strong performance on household food security, and relatively good scores on indicators used to measure healthy food and diets,” said Jean-Charles Le Vallée, Associate Director, Centre for Food, The Conference Board of Canada.


  • Alberta receives an “A” grade for household food security.
  • Alberta is a “C” performer on three categories: industry prosperity, food safety, and environmental sustainability.
  • Saskatchewan is the best performing province with “A” grades on four of the five categories.

Alberta Among Top Performers on Food Security

Alberta’s highest grade is an “A” for household food security. Food security in Canada is not based on food availability but on accessibility and affordability. Of all provinces, Alberta has the lowest percentage of adults and children that use food banks. However, Alberta receives “D” grades for the number of food stores per 1,000 people.

Solid Performer on Healthy Food and Diets

Alberta receives its sole “B” grade on healthy food and diets. Like most Canadians, Albertans consume more calories and sodium than they need, and do not consume enough fruits and vegetables or fish and shellfish. That said, Albertans perform relatively well receiving seven “A” grades on chronic diet-related health conditions due to low rates of type 2 diabetes, obesity, gastrointestinal disease, and diagnosed hypertension.

Province Receives Mixed Results on Three Categories

Alberta is a “C” performer on three categories: industry prosperity, food safety, and environmental sustainability.

Alberta’s food industry prosperity performance is mixed, as it receives “A” to “D” grades across the 17 metrics, giving the province an overall “C” grade on this category. Alberta receives four “A” grades, including top marks for farm area, and net capital stock in crop and animal production. Alberta’s grades demonstrate that its farming industry is strong. However, the province has notable “D” grades on three agriculture indicators: per cent of farms with revenue of at least $500,000, farming return on assets, and farm solvency ratio debt coverage. Alberta also receives a “C” grade for its per capita food manufacturing sales, and a “D” grade for food manufacturing exports.

Alberta receives an overall “C” grade on food safety. While the province receives “A” grades for its low number of food recalls per 100,000 people, incidence of Listeria, and hog and cattle condemnation rates, it receives “D” grades on incidence of Salmonella and poultry condemnation rates.

Alberta is not only the largest emitter of agricultural greenhouse gases (GHGs), but also has the highest levels of particulate matter emissions among the provinces and receives a “C” grade for food related environmental sustainability. With just 2 per cent of Albertans redirecting their garbage toward reuse, recycle, or composting, it is the lowest ranked province on waste diversion. Over one in three Alberta households throw out the equivalent of one or more grocery bags of food each week. The province manages to boost its grade on environmental sustainability due to low ammonia emissions, low rates of water contamination by pesticides, and excellent soil health.

In all, 63 food performance metrics were used to evaluate the overall food performance of the provinces. Definitions for the indicators and the full report are available from our e-Library.

Canada’s Food Report Card: Provincial Performance was prepared for The Conference Board of Canada’s Canadian Food Observatory (CFO). The Observatory monitors progress on improving food performance, spurs the required changes, and encourages action to make the Canadian Food Strategy a reality.

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