January 1, 2016 Livestock Inventory Estimates Alberta/Canada

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Agri-Food Statistics Update - Issue No.LS16-1
Collected from a variety of sources, the Statistics and Data Development Branch monitors statistical indicators of agri-food activity for Alberta. The Agri-Food Statistics Update is designed to provide users with commentary on current issues, trends and new developments related to agriculture and the food and beverage processing industries. Up-to-date statistics are supplemented with informative charts and diagrams. To gauge Alberta’s performance, comparative data and information are often available for Canada and the provinces.

The estimates present potential marketings (i.e. supply which could become available), based on the size of the breeding herd and imports.  Such information is useful to producers and others when making decisions relating to marketings, pricing, future production, as well as in estimating farm income and farm expenses.

The process involves verifying commodity supply and disposition variables to arrive at ending stocks.  The supply variables are opening stocks, births and imports (interprovincial/international), while the disposition variables include deaths and condemnations, marketings, and exports (interprovincial/international).  Administrative data are used where available, supplemented with some estimates where data are not timely or available.  Hence, the inventory estimates are subject to revision.  Given this limitation, users are advised to exercise some caution when using the estimates. 

Note to Users:  The contents of this document may not be used or reproduced without properly accrediting Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, Economics and Competitiveness Branch, Statistics and Data Development Section.

January 1, 2016 Livestock Inventory Estimates Alberta/Canada

On March 3, Statistics Canada released the January 1, 2016 inventory estimates for cattle, pigs, and sheep and lamb on farms in Alberta and other Canadian provinces. 

Key Messages

Cattle and Calves Inventories
  • Cattle and calves on Alberta farms totalled 4.9 million head, up 0.4 per cent from January 1, 2015.
  • All cattle classes posted gains with the exception of heifers for slaughter and steers due to an increase in animals retained rather than being slaughtered and exported in 2015.
Pig Inventories
  • Alberta’s total pig herd on farms was estimated at 1.5 million head, up 1.7 per cent from a year previous.
  • Inventories increased for all classes of animals with the exception of market hogs in the "Over 81 kilograms" class.
  • The major factor encouraging growth in pig inventories was the strong consumer demand for pork.
Sheep and Lamb Inventories
  • The size of the provincial flock on farms was 135,000 head, down 6.9 per cent from a year earlier.
  • Record slaughter lamb and sheep prices in 2015 encouraged marketings.
Other Comparisons
  • Nationally, cattle and calf, and pig inventories were up, while sheep and lamb inventories decreased.
  • Alberta currently ranks first in the nation in cattle and calf inventories; third in sheep and lamb inventories; and fourth in pig inventories.

For a complete copy of this update, please download the attached .pdf.
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For more information about the content of this document, contact Ashan Shooshtarian.
This document is maintained by Rita Splawinski.
This information published to the web on March 23, 2016.
Last Reviewed/Revised on April 6, 2018.