Canada has over 90,000 beef producers, represented by the Canadian Cattlemen’s Association. Canada is the third largest beef and cattle exporter in the world after Brazil and Australia, with 81 percent of Canadian beef going to the United States. Total worldwide beef exports in 2005 were 7.1 million tonnes of which Canada exported 11.6 per cent. Beef production contributed $25 billion to Canada’s economy in 2005.
Alberta is Canada’s main beef province with 2.05 million head of cattle, followed by Ontario with 410,000 head. The industry experienced a setback after the first BSE-infected cow was found in Canada in May 2003, but since then the border to the US has re-opened for young cattle. Exports were up 10 per cent in 2005 compared to 2004.
Ontario has many smaller to mid-sized beef operations, with an average herd size of about 50 animals.
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