Nicknamed the Great White Nord, Canada is a major global economic force, with imports worth US$453.1 billion last year. Food imports continued to rise especially for fresh fruits and vegetables, which saw an increase of 3.9%. In the following article, we’ll analyze Canada’s main food imports and trends and identify some of the top Canadian food importers.
The growing international demand for exotic products, mainly fruits and vegetables, such as bananas, lemons, watermelon, pineapple is also affecting Canada, which due to its climate must rely heavily on imports. Latin America is the biggest supplier of fresh fruits for Canadian importers.
Among the top fresh fruit imports was bananas, followed by watermelons, apples, lemons, oranges, strawberries and pineapples. Mexico is a top supplier, especially for lemons and Costa Rica exported the most pineapple. Other Latin countries that Canada imports food from are: Guatemala, Chile, Ecuador and Colombia.
Other fresh fruits that are always in demand are grapes and cherries.
Canada is an important producer of fresh vegetables, but the country also continues to import many categories that are in high demand. The leading countries that supply vegetables to Canada are USA, Mexico and China.
The USA holds the record for potato and lettuce, while Mexico supplies Canada with tomatoes, onions and peppers.
Seeds, Nuts, Crustaceans and…. kale
Canadian imports of nuts, seeds and also dried and dehydrated fruits are also high. In this case, Mexico is the biggest supplier of these kinds of products, from figs, nuts, frozen or dried – Canada imported US$801.83 million in 2019 from Mexico.
The country’s aquatic products market is extremely well developed. The internal production is supplemented with imports of crustaceans, mollusks, aquatic invertebrates and the major food suppliers for these are Vietnam and South Korea.
Health foods are also gaining traction and a surprisingly popular vegetable in Canada is kale. The green leaf plant known for its health benefits saw high demand, the country being among the top ones worldwide in terms of demand. China represents a major supplier of kale not only for Canada, but for the whole world.
Coffee is part of the morning routine of almost every Canadian, thus Canada imported from Brazil almost US$136.89 million during 2019, the number seeing a decline actually, compared to the previous years. The most requested were the whole bean category, coffee husks and substitutes with coffee. Besides coffee, Canada imported from Brazil tea and vanilla beans.
Another category that saw an increase in imports of almost 5% last year is bread, biscuits, cakes, and pastries, totaling US$1,633,525,000
Three food importers and distributors from Canada:
1. Gordon Food Service
Address: 1700 Cliveden Avenue, Delta
Top products imported/distributed: Fruits, vegetables, meat, seafood, pasta, frozen products
Address: 2233 Argentia Road, Suite 401, Mississauga
Top products imported: Organic fruits and vegetables
Address: 301 Chrislea Road, Vaughan
Top products imported: Fish & Seafood
To get access to a list of close to 735 active food importers and distributors from Canada, you can access one of the BestFoodImporters databases.