Todd Crawford, an economist from the Conference Board of Canada, said Alberta faces the worst lost revenue, followed by Ontario, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
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Labour shortages costly for farmers

OTTAWA — Labour vacancies cost Canadian farmers in 2018 nearly double what they cost four years earlier, according to research released last week by the Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council. The Labour Market Forecast found that 16,500 jobs went unfilled, costing $2.9 billion in lost revenue, or 4.7 percent of product sales. Previous work pegged […] Read more

It’s important for Alberta farmers to ensure they are in compliance with new labour laws.  |  File photo

Pay attention to new farm labour laws in Alberta

For Alberta farmers and ranchers, there are no off hours. Every season brings its challenges and some seasons require extra hands to get all the work done. It’s a way of life that’s never going to change, but changes to Alberta’s Employment Standards mean farmers and ranchers are going to have to take steps to […] Read more

Prairie grain growers may soon be desperate for on-farm workers because a new report predicts a labour shortfall of more than 17,000 in Canada. | File photo

Farm labour shortfall expected to soar

Prairie grain growers may soon be desperate for on-farm workers because a new report predicts a labour shortfall of more than 17,000 in Canada. The Canadian Agricultural Human Resource Council, in a study released this morning, said Canada’s grain and oilseed industry employed 55,800 people in 2014. Between 2014 and 2025, labour demand in the […] Read more

A federal committee reviewing the Temporary Foreign Worker Program has made encouraging recommendations for Canada's agriculture and agri-food sector. | File photo

Foreign worker suggestions draw thumbs up

House of Commons committee recommends removing the rule that requires workers to leave Canada after four years

A federal committee, reviewing the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, has made encouraging recommendations for Canada’s agriculture and food sectors. The question now is whether the government will act on the committee’s report. “There’s the million dollar question. Are they going to take these recommendations seriously or are they just going to say, you know what, […] Read more

Pressure is mounting for Alberta to initiate mandatory workers compensation for farm employees.  |  File photo

Mandatory workers comp advised for farm workers

The tale of Alberta farm workers exclusion from mandatory workers compensation coverage sounds like a Randy Travis country song. “It’s farmers, and preachers and hookers and teachers. Those are the people who we leave out,” said labour relations researcher Bob Barnetson of Athabasca University. His report, A dirty business: The exclusion of Alberta farm workers […] Read more

Use skilled help when processing cattle and seek help from neighbours, friends and the foreign workers program for other chores.  |  File photo

Beef producers must use labour resources, programs efficiently

Beef producers are not immune to the labour shortage facing today’s agricultural industry. The oil and gas sector, especially in Alberta, draws workers from across Canada and abroad to satisfy its voracious appetite. What can we do in agriculture to alleviate this strain on the labour force? Producers are independent people and often get used […] Read more

Feedlot operators turn to foreign workers

Employers in the agriculture sector are having a tough time finding and retaining workers in Western Canada’s tight labour market, according to an industry panel at the Western Canada Feedlot Management School in Saskatoon. Unemployment rates in Western Canada are low, competition for capable workers is high and employers are having difficulty attracting workers to […] Read more