With a vast land base twice the size of Germany and plenty of fertile soil, fresh water and sunshine, agriculture has long been an economic driver for the province. As a result, its diverse agriculture and agri-food sector has established an international reputation for consistently supplying high-quality, sustainably produced food and ingredients that feed the world.
Despite the impacts of the global COVID-19 pandemic, the province continues to demonstrate incredible resiliency with a strong and growing economy.
In 2020, Saskatchewan produced $16.9 billion in agricultural exports - a 31 per cent increase from 2019, and a new high for the province. Agri-food exports represented more than 55 per cent of total provincial exports in 2020, which were valued at $30.4 billion.
Center of excellence for oilseed, oat and pulse crop processing
Saskatchewan is the world's biggest exporter of peas, lentils, durum wheat, mustard seed, canola, flaxseed and oats. Canola oil, canola meal, and processed oats were the top value-added products in 2020. As a key player in Canada’s growing plant-based food and plant-protein sector, the province continues to expand from a traditional focus on crop exports to become a center of excellence for oilseed, oat and pulse crop processing. Canola processing currently represents the largest portion of Saskatchewan’s value-added sector, and presents significant potential for further growth.
The province is also one of the best places for plant protein research, innovation and processing, having one of the world’s best crop science and food product research and development infrastructures. With decades in plant protein research and product development, Saskatchewan takes a collaborative research and development approach between public and private organizations, as well as government and producers.
Validation and transformation of food ingredients
The Saskatchewan Food Industry Development Centre is a partnership between the Saskatchewan Ministry of Agriculture, the Saskatchewan Food and Ingredient Processors Association and the University of Saskatchewan. The range of expertise that each partner offers to food processors help support business viability and market success. The Food Centre provides one-stop, full service assistance to the food industry, from ideation and product prototyping to manufacturing. Validation and transformation of food ingredients into innovative food and beverage concepts, specifically in the area of plant-based proteins, is one of the Food Centre’s many specialties. Strong research and development, quality crops and competitive costs are all reasons major international companies in the plant protein space such as AGT Food and Ingredients, Agrocorp and Ingredion have chosen to process plant protein products in Saskatchewan.
Competitive incentives in Saskatchewan
The Government of Saskatchewan recognizes how important the agri-value industry is, offering one of Canada’s lowest corporate income tax rates for manufacturing and processing operations at 10 per cent.
Other competitive incentives available to companies include the Saskatchewan Commercial Innovation Incentive, a first of its kind patent-box style incentive in North America. The Saskatchewan Value-Added Agricultural Incentive is a non-refundable, non-transferable 15 per cent tax rebate on capital expenditures for new or existing value-added agriculture facilities that make a minimum capital investment of $10 million to expand production capacity.
Saskatchewan is perfectly positioned to feed a growing world population - and it all comes naturally. You can find out more by visiting https://thinksask.ca/invest.