Canada is a nation well-positioned to capitalize on the market for greenhouse-grown fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers. Each year there are more greenhouses operating, more greenhouse space available, and as result, greater output of greenhouse-produced products. Ontario leads all provinces in this area and generated over $1.6 billion in sales in 2016; during the same year, overall Canadian revenues were over $2.8 billion.
But as the industry grows, there has been a growing need for innovative technologies which reduce operating costs, improve yields, and support diverse product offerings. Energy efficient lighting and growing technologies are some of the most common investment areas for commercial greenhouse businesses because of their ability to drive greater profitability.
Government funding is even available to support the productivity and competitiveness of greenhouse growers. Government grants and loans can support the expansion of greenhouse space and offset a portion of costs related to technology adoption or research and development projects.
Greenhouse Innovation is Required for Canadian Competitiveness
Greenhouse growers in Canada are enjoying steady growth in the industry. The last six years of data available (2011-2016) shows an increase in sales, which includes domestic sales and export of goods to international markets. There are several factors that play into this trend, including:
- Consumers requesting locally-sourced food year-round;
- Crops being produced indoors that were previously too difficult; and
- A growing medical (and soon to be recreational) marijuana industry.