The poultry industry makes up a significant segment of the Canadian economy, especially that of Ontario. Ontario is home to the highest number of registered turkey growers in Canada, at nearly 160 establishments as of 2019, as well as the highest number of poultry and egg producers, at over 630 businesses as of December 2020. Over the last several years, the average annual expenditure of poultry and egg farms has increased significantly, from around 990,000 Canadian dollars in 2013 to 1.23 million dollars in 2018.
As a major source of protein for Canadians, processed poultry is expected to grow in sales value between 2018 and 2022, from around 730 million U.S. dollars to over 850 million U.S. dollars. However, turkey meat seems to be losing popularity among Canadian consumers; in 2010 retail sales of turkey amounted to nearly 80 million kilograms, and by 2018 this figure stood at roughly 50 million kilograms.
Chicken is the most popular type of meat among consumers in Canada, with each Canadian consuming nearly 76 pounds of chicken in 2020. The average retail price for chicken decreased sharply in mid-2020, compared to previous years. Starting its decline from March on, i.e., during the COVID-19 pandemic, the retail price of one kilogram of chicken was less than seven Canadian dollars in June of 2020. This figure gradually increased to an all-time high 7.94 Canadian dollars in October 2020 and has fluctuated since. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Canadian shoppers had problems purchasing meat products due to the outbreak: over a third of consumers had experienced issues with chicken product availability.