Canada’s Food Industry 2018-19: A Plate That’s Full

The Conference Board of Canada, May 29, 2019
Recorded Webinar by
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The Canadian food sector is the kitchen table for many of the factors currently shaping the Canada economy—including the changes to traditional industries brought on by technology and automation, high consumer debt levels, opportunities and uncertainty in global trade, the campaign for higher wages, and the murky investment climate. To better understand how a sector that affects us all is managing these shifts, you need to view this recorded webinar.

Robert Meyer-Robinson presents The Conference Board of Canada’s latest, exclusive Canadian Industrial Outlooks for Food Manufacturing, Food Services, and Grocery Stores, which includes 5-year outlooks for key industry variables such as production, prices, employment, revenues, costs, and profitability.

Webinar Highlights

Along with economic and financial data for these industries, Robert discusses broad and industry-specific trends that will shape the food sector:

  • Food manufacturing: New trade agreements give Canadian exporters additional market opportunities and a chance to diversify their customer bases. Surging export demand means that the industry is operating at nearly 90 per cent of its current capacity. Without additional investment, the industry will not be able to take full advantage of export opportunities, but the current investment climate is uncertain due to concerns about U.S. market access.
  • Food Services: Tapped-out Canadian consumers are likely to reduce their spending on dining out. Meanwhile, on the cost side, newly-legislated minimum wage increases in both Ontario and Alberta will put pressure on industry expenses. Technology continues to reshape the food sector, as illustrated by the emerging trend of “ghost” restaurants that have no seating but operate through online ordering and food couriers.
  • Food Retailers: The future of food retailing appears to be online, and the competition among the world’s largest retailers is just underway in Canada to provide grocery ordering services. Traditional grocery stores are offering more non-food services and expanding their ready-to-eat products.

About Robert

Photo of Robert Meyer-RobinsonRobert Meyer-Robinson joined The Conference Board of Canada in 2015 as an Economist within the Industrial Economic Trends group. In this role, Robert is responsible for conducting regular research on several industries across the Canadian economy, and contributes to industrial outlook analysis. Robert holds a Bachelor of Arts Honours degree in economics and German from Queen’s University, and a Master’s degree in economics from Carleton University.

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