Re-thinking the future of labour in Canadian agriculture

May 29, 2020

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What do farmers have in common with high-tech solutions, software and data-driven results? Everything, according to a recent RBC report, Farmer 4.0: How the coming skills revolution can transform agriculture.
 
The report highlights how Canada needs to grab hold of “the internet of farming.” It points out that Canada’s agricultural sector could be valued at $11 billion by 2030. To achieve this, the report recommends a complete re-think to ag education and focus more on both young people and a growing pool of new Canadians.
 
It says there could be as many as a 123,000-worker shortage by 2030, which comes on the heels of a looming retirement explosion from baby boomers.
 
The report was written before the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak in March, which upended food production and processing, supply chains and consumer demands. The fluid situation continues to impact agriculture, especially the workforce, where temporary foreign workers face self-isolation protocols when entering the country prior to starting work.
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