The average value of Canadian farmland increased 8.4 percent in 2017 following a gain of 7.9 percent in 2016.

Gervais jean philippe
Vice President and Chief Agricultural Economist / Farm Credit Canada

Although average farmland values have increased every year since 1993, recent increases are less pronounced than the 2011-2015 period, which recorded significant average farmland value increases in many different regions.

With the steady climb of farmland values, now is a good time for producers to review and adjust their business plan to reflect variable commodity prices and slightly higher interest rates, assess their overall financial position and focus on increasing productivity.

It’s also a good idea to have a risk management plan in place to protect your business against unforeseen circumstances and events.

While Saskatchewan, Ontario and Nova Scotia reported the largest average increases, four provinces – British Columbia, Alberta, Manitoba and Prince Edward Island – saw a smaller increase from the previous year.


Quebec and New Brunswick both showed increases fairly close to the national average, while Newfoundland and Labrador didn’t have enough transactions to fully assess farmland values in that province.

Some of last year’s average farmland value increase may also be a result of timing, as most provinces recorded a faster pace of increase in the first six months of the year, while interest rate increases didn’t occur until the latter half of 2017. Recent increases in borrowing costs and expectations of further increases could cool the farmland market in 2018.

The FCC’s Farmland Values report highlights average changes in farmland values – regionally, provincially and nationally. This year’s report describes changes from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31, 2017 and, for the first time, provides a value range in terms of price per acre.

FCC farmland values report – Change by province – January 1 - December 31, 2017

It’s important to remember farmland prices can vary widely within regions due to many local factors which can influence how much value a buyer and seller attach to a parcel of land.

Every farm operation is unique, and there may be a strong business case for buying more land, but not without carefully weighing the risks and rewards.

Farm operations need to be cautious in regions where the growth rate of farmland values has exceeded that of farm incomes in recent years.

The good news is: Canadian farms are generally in a strong financial position when it comes to net cash income and their balance sheets.  end mark

Visit online to view the 2017 FCC Farmland Values report and historical data.

J.P. Gervais
  • J.P. Gervais

  • Chief Agricultural Economist
  • Farm Credit Canada