Consumer preferences for farm-fresh goods and locally grown produce, coupled with modern technological advances and evolving physical distancing measures during the early stages of the pandemic, posed numerous challenges for Canada’s farmers. In response, adapting to these evolving consumer needs, Canada’s farmers have been adjusting the way they sell their goods to the public.
Data from the 2021 Census of Agriculture show that both the number and the proportion of farms reporting direct sales have increased, compared with the 2016 Census. Furthermore, the predominant methods used by farms to sell products directly to consumers have also changed.
From 2015 to 2020, the number and proportion of farms reporting direct sales in Canada increased. In 2020, 25,917 farms (13.6% of farms in Canada) reported direct sales. This was an increase from 24,510 farms (12.7% of farms in Canada) in 2015.