The Ontario greenhouse sector is positioned to grow annually at a rate of 5% for the next 10 years with proper partnerships with all levels of government. This statement is from the newly presented Growth and Economic Prosperity Study by OGVG, which has been supported by funding through OMAFRA's Grassroots Growth Initiative.
According to the study, the potential for future success for Ontario's greenhouse vegetable sector is high. "There are many risks associated with the potential growth rates and the direction of that growth. Navigating the complexities of all levels of government, community relationships, and access to necessary inputs like energy (i.e., electricity) and infrastructure (i.e., sanitary sewer systems) is critical to the successes ahead."
Ontario's greenhouse vegetable sector represents $2.3B in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) contribution, accounts for 81.6% of greenhouse vegetables exported out of Canada, and is a significant employer providing more than 32,000 individuals ranging in skill level employment. The purpose of the study was to demonstrate the potential for high growth and profitability across the Ontario greenhouse vegetable sector, along with corresponding benefits to various stakeholders across the province.
"Canada's greenhouse vegetable sector has emerged as a leading producer of greenhouse products in North America, experiencing significant growth and success across the country, especially in Ontario. The sector's success can be attributed to its strong commitment to innovation, sustainability, and quality, resulting in significant capital investments in high-tech greenhouses. These investments have enabled growers to adopt cutting-edge technologies and practices, such as controlled environment agriculture, precision irrigation, and integrated pest management, to increase efficiency, productivity, and iv competitiveness while producing high-quality, safe, and sustainable products. The increasing consumer demand for locally grown, fresh produce has also contributed to the sector's growth and success. The greenhouse vegetable sector's growth is expected to continue, with an estimated annual growth rate of 5%", the researches write.
"However, the operating expenses for vegetable greenhouse operators have significantly increased. In 2021, labour costs accounted for 32% of the operating expenses, followed by other operating expenses at 24%, and other crop expenses at 19%. Fuel expenses, plant material purchases for growing, and electricity expenses also contributed to the overall operating costs, with electricity expenses growing by 59% between 2017 to 2021. Additionally, labour costs, other crop expenses, and plant material purchases for growing each increased by 48%, while other operating expenses grew by 23% and fuel expenses grew by 11%."
For more information:
Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers