Cow Appreciation Day!
Did you know that Ontario Farmland Trust protects 4 farms that raise beef or dairy cattle? We ‘herd’ you would be interested in some ‘a-moo-sing’ facts on cattle farming in Ontario so you can see how important the beef and dairy industries are to our agricultural sector and to the provincial economy.
Currently, the beef industry creates revenue of over one billion dollars in farmgate sales. Beef farms accounts for 13.7% of all farms in Ontario. Many of the farms OFT protects have small herds of beef cattle, which reflect the overall statistic in Canada that 62% of all beef farms have smaller than average herds. Ontario generates 1.2 million pounds of beef on average. Ontario’s beef industry represents 6% of the beef cattle population in Canada. Beef farmers are some of the hardest working people in our province. The beef industry has really ‘beefed’ up Ontario’s economy by creating over 60 thousand jobs in production, processing, and retail.
The dairy industry has a farmgate value of over two billion dollars in sales. Dairy farms represent around 7% of all Ontario farms. In 2015/2016, Ontario dairy farms produced 2.8 billion litres of milk. Hopefully you had enough for your cereal this morning! Dairy farmers care a lot about their communities. In 2015/2016 dairy farmers donated over 800 thousand litres of milk to food banks in Ontario. How ‘udderly’ wonderful!
Take the opportunity today to thank a dairy or beef farmer near you. When possible, buy local beef or dairy and support your local food economy. This in turn will sustain our rich agricultural heritage.