While there has been much talk of residential housing prices climbing ever higher in Canada, less media attention has been paid to valuable farmland.
Across Canada farmland prices have been on a slow and steady increase
In Alberta for example prices have doubled on average in just the last five years.
Farmland in southern Ontario continues to be at great risk, primarily from development speculators. In the ten years from 2005 to 2015, prices rose 150 per cent. However, according to data from Statistics Canada, even that fell behind Saskatchewan and Manitoba at 200 and 175 per cent, respectively.
The latest annual report by the Farm Credit Canada for farmland values across the country for 2017 has just been released.
It shows that on average, the value of farm land across Canada increased by 8.4 per cent.
This follows a national average increase in value of 7.9 per cent in 2016, and 10.1 per cent in 2015.
Average values of farmland can vary among the provinces, and given the enormous size of each province, and soil and weather conditions determining what kind of farming would be viable, the land values also vary within provinces.
While some farmers are buying neighbouring land for their own purposes, there is continuing talk of speculation by investment companies, many of them foreign.
Nevertheless there is continuing concern, that the increase in prices is preventing some young farmers from continuing the farm tradition as they simply can’t afford the land.