indicatorThe Owl

Farming a bright spot in Alberta last year

The realized net income of Alberta farmers and ranchers rose by 38 per cent in 2020

By ATB Economics 27 May 2021 1 min read

The numbers are in for 2020 and they confirm that it was a good year overall for Alberta’s farmers and ranchers.

As a group, the realized net income* of Alberta farmers and ranchers rose by 38 per cent to $1.4 billion in 2020. Higher revenue and almost no change in operating costs drove the increase.

Lower prices for machinery fuel last year helped keep expenses in check, but the reverse will be the case in 2021.

Net income plummeted by 70 per cent to $0.5 billion in 2018, but bounced back in 2019 by 104 per cent to over $1 billion.

Net income in Alberta peaked in 2017 at $1.7 billion.

Here’s the rub: while revenue was up for most crops including wheat, canola, barely and cannabis, it was down by 6 per cent for cattle due to disruptions related to the pandemic.

Saskatchewan was home to the largest annual increase in net income at 158 per cent for a total of $4.5 billion. Nationally, net income rose by 84 per cent to $9.9 billion.

Revenue is off to a solid start so far in 2021 with farm cash receipts in Alberta 16 per cent higher than during the same quarter last year.


*Realized net income is the difference between a farmer's cash receipts and operating expenses, minus depreciation, plus income in kind.

Answer to the previous trivia question: The month of May was named for Maia, the Greek and Roman goddess of fertility.

Today’s trivia question: Which province posted the largest value of farm cash receipts in 2020?

Realized net farm income in Alberta peaked in 2017 at $1.7 billion

Realized net farm income in Alberta peaked in 2017 at $1.7 billion


Economics News

Subscribe and get a quick daily snapshot of what’s happening in Alberta’s economy

Need help?

Our Client Care team will be happy to assist.

Chat now
ATB Virtual Assistant
The ATB Virtual Assistant doesn't support landscape mode. Please tilt your device vertically to portrait mode.
×