Business & Economics
  • Raw Material: Oilseeds                                                  
  • Primary Industry: Agriculture

Where Oilseeds Can Be Found in Canada (Geographic Location):

Oilseeds are grown in various regions across Canada. Some of the places where oilseed production includes the Prairie provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba, along with Ontario and Quebec.

Prairie Provinces (Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba):

  • The Prairie provinces, also known as Canada’s ‘Breadbasket’ are major contributors to the country’s oilseed production.
  • Canola is the dominant oilseed crop in this region, and Canada is one of the world’s largest producers of canola.
  • The Prairie provinces are suitable for the growth of canola due to the vast fertile land and suitable conditions.


  • Ontario is another region for oilseed production, with a focus on soybeans and sunflowers.
  • Soybean has various uses, specifically for oil extraction and also acts as a protein source in animal feed.
  • Sunflowers are another oilseed crop found in Ontario and mainly used for sunflower oil. Along with that, sunflower seeds are also available as snacks.


  • The oilseed crops in Quebec are focused on crops like flax and hemp, mainly for oil extraction.
  • Flaxseed is used for its oil, which is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and has various health benefits.
  • Hemp is cultivated for its seeds, which can be pressed to extract oil used in cooking and as a nutritional supplement.

Where Are Oilseeds Extracted and Processed:

Oilseeds are normally extracted and processed in facilities known as oilseed crushing plants. These facilities are located near major oilseed production areas for ease of transport and to minimize processing costs. In Canada, the majority of oilseed facilities are found in the Praire provinces.

List of Products That Can Be Made From Oilseeds:

Oilseeds are a valuable raw material in the agricultural industry and can be processed to create various products, such as :

1. Edible Oils:  Canola and soybeans are processed to extract edible oils that are utilized for cooking and food manufacturing.

2. Animal Feed: Oilseed meal, which is a byproduct of oil extraction, is used as a high-protein ingredient in animal feed for livestock and poultry.

3. Biodiesel: Canola oilseeds can be used to produce biodiesel, a renewable fuel source, which is manufactured from vegetable oils, animal fats, or recycled restaurant grease.

List of Companies That Extract/Process Oilseeds:

Several companies in Canada are involved in the extraction and processing of oilseeds, including:

1. Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) (Revenue: 101.6 billion USD)

2. Cargill (Revenue: 165 billion USD)

3. Viterra (Revenue: 54 billion USD)

4. Bunge (Revenue: 67.23 billion USD)

*Revenue numbers include figures from the 2022 annual year and the overall revenue of the company which includes other products from oilseeds as well.

How Does Oilseeds Provide Jobs for Canadians? What Kind of Jobs Does It Provide:

Oilseed production and processing provide employment opportunities for Canadians in various roles, including:

1. Farmers: Farmers plant, cultivate, and harvest oilseeds.

2. Processing Plant Workers: Processing Plant workers work in oilseed processing facilities and operate machinery and oversee production processes.

3. Transportation and Logistics: Workers are needed for the transportation of oilseeds from farms to processing plants and distribution to markets.

4. Research and Development: Scientists and researchers continually work on improving oilseed varieties and processing methods.

5. Business Management and Administration: Oilseed production companies’ managers, administrative staff, and sales teams.

Where Is Oilseeds Exported To? What Countries:

Canada is one of the world’s largest producers of canola, along with canola oil and animal meal. In 2022, Canada produced over 19.14 million metric tons of canola. Canada exports oilseeds and oilseed products to various countries. Some of the major export countries include the United States, China, Japan, Mexico, and the European union. These exports contribute to Canada’s agricultural industry, accounting for about 7% of Canada’s GDP.

Are There Any Tariffs Associated With Exporting Oilseeds:

Tariffs vary depending on different countries and the trade agreements between countries. Some major trade agreements regarding oilseeds are:

Trade agreements like the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) play a major role in regulating tariffs for Canadian agricultural products across the North American continent. CUSMA offers duty-free trade between America, Mexico and Canada, eliminating any tariffs regarding various products, including oilseeds.

The Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP) also offers Canadian exporters preferential access and tariff reductions to key global markets. Through this free trade agreement, Canada forms a trading bloc with 10 other countries that represent almost 500 million consumers and 13.5% of global GDP. These countries include Japan, Mexico, Australia, Chile, and other Canadian exports regarding oilseeds. Before this agreement, there was a 5% tariff regarding exports to some select countries such as Malaysia, Korea and Peru.


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