Agriculture and Food Processing - Commodities: Special Crops

Vegetables


About the Industry | Processing | Trade & Marketing | types | Contacts

carrotsThe Manitoba Advantage

Manitoba is blessed with a long, warm growing season, good soil conditions and an abundant supply of fresh water.

The long sunny summer days, characteristic of the Canadian prairies, coupled with soil suitable for vegetable production provides Manitoba producers with excellent vegetable growing conditions.

Factor in the accessibility of fresh water to irrigate these crops and it is easy to see why Manitoba produces top quality vegetables.

About the Industry

Early settlers to Manitoba had vegetable gardens and in many cases excess produce was sold.

The first recorded commercial vegetable production in the province was in 1936 and over the years, the area planted to vegetables destined for both the fresh market and processing facilities has increased.

Since the 1970s, the over 20 major commercial vegetable farms and approximately 300 market gardeners in Manitoba devote between 4,000 to 6,000 acres to vegetables each year.

Today, most of the commercial vegetable production is concentrated around Portage la Prairie, Winkler, Emerson and areas north and south of Winnipeg in areas located close to rivers and aquifers as nearly all the vegetable land is irrigated.

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Processing

Commercial vegetable processing in Manitoba began in the 1920s with the canning of peas and the pickling of several other vegetables.

Further expansion occurred in the 1940s and 1950s when several new processing facilities opened and the number of processed products increased to include diced vegetables, and a variety of stews and soups.

Today, however, there is no longer any canning, freezing or processing of fresh vegetables (other than potatoes) completed on a large scale in Manitoba. In fact, Crocus Foods Ltd. of Portage la Prairie and Naleway Foods of Winnipeg are the only remaining processors of fresh vegetable products in Manitoba.

green & red cabbageTrade & Marketing

Since the 1940s, various forms of marketing co-operatives have been involved with selling Manitoba fresh vegetables.

Peak of the Market (formerly the Manitoba Vegetable Producers' Marketing Board) markets Manitoba vegetables under the "Peak of the Market" label to wholesalers and retailers throughout Canada and the United States, and into several countries in Asia, Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean. Wholesalers and processors are attracted to the consistent quality of Manitoba's high grade, flavorful vegetables.

Over the past 6 years, Peak of the Market has enjoyed tremendous success as it has continued to open new markets and revisit other markets with a top quality lineup of fresh vegetables.

Types

Over 110 different types of vegetables are grown in the province, ranging from asparagus to zucchini. Those grown in the largest quantities include carrots, onions, cabbage, cauliflower, sweet corn and broccoli.

Vegetables are washed, graded and packed into consumer-sized bags or bunches by producers prior to being shipped to Peak of the Market, since almost all Manitoba vegetable farms have their own washing, grading and packaging facilities.

Many of these growers also have some of the most technologically advanced storage programs in North America, which allows them to store vegetables such as onions, carrots, rutabagas, beets, parsnips, squash and cabbage for periods of 6 months to one year.

In these storage facilities, the temperature, humidity and air movement is carefully monitored to ensure the vegetables are maintained in optimum condition to ensure superior quality and top customer value.

The Manitoba vegetable industry has a growing reputation for its high quality product and commitment to meeting the needs of domestic and international customers.


Contact: Address: Other Links:

Mila Ruiz Turiaf
Mila.RuizTuriaf@gov.mb.ca

Send a Message or
E-mail: mbtrade@gov.mb.ca

Tel:  204-945-2466
Fax: 204-957-1763
Toll free in Canada and the U.S.
1-800-529-9981

Manitoba Trade & Investment
1100 - 259 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg, Manitoba,
Canada R3B 3P4

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