Mixed Results for Manitoba on Conference Board Food Report Card

OTTAWA, May 18, 2017 /CNW/ - Manitoba receives mixed grades and is a middle-of-the-pack performer on The Conference Board of Canada's first provincial food report card. Canada's Food Report Card: Provincial Performance presents data and analysis on five categories: industry prosperity, healthy food and diets, food safety, household food security, and environmental sustainability.

"Manitoba's food report card is a mixed bag of results. On the one hand, Manitoba is one of only two provinces to earn an "A" for food safety but, on the other hand, it is a weak performer when it comes to food security," said Jean-Charles Le Vallée, Associate Director, Centre for Food, The Conference Board of Canada

Highlights

  • Manitoba receives mixed grades for its food performance.
  • The province scores an "A" for food safety, but is the worst performing province when it comes to household food security.
  • Saskatchewan is the best performing province with "A" grades on four of the five categories.

Manitoba Top Performer on Food Safety
Manitoba's best grade is an "A" for food safety. The province does well on all four animal condemnation metrics, which play a critical role in food safety and human health. Manitoba also has a relatively low number of reported food-borne illnesses, such as Listeria, E. coli, Salmonella and Campylobacter, and receives mainly "A" and "B" grades. The province's lowest grades in this category is a "C" for the number of food recalls per 100,000 inhabitants.

Manitoba Solid Performer on Healthy Food and Diets, and Environmental Sustainability
Manitoba receives "B"s in two categories: healthy food and diets, and environmental sustainability. Manitoba is a mid-range performer in the healthy food and diets category, placing 5th out of the 10 Canadian provinces. Like most Canadians, Manitobans consume more calories and sodium than they need, and do not eat enough fruits and vegetables or fish and shellfish. The province earns "C"s and "D"s on these healthy food and diets indicators. Manitoba also places around the national average on many of the indicators used to assess chronic diet-related health conditions, such as obesity, hypertension, and high blood pressure.

Manitoba receives a "B" grade for their environmental sustainability practices, placing them in the upper-middle range in terms of their grades as compared to their Canadian provincial peers. Manitobans perform relatively well when it comes to household food waste. Approximately 25 per cent of households in Manitoba throw out the equivalent of one or more grocery bags of food each week, much lower than the Canadian average of close to 35 per cent. Most households in Manitoba also avoid food waste by consuming food before its best before date. Less than 15 per cent of households in Manitoba reported failure to eat food before its best before date as a reason for throwing out food. The province's overall grade on this category, however, is pulled down by poor results on soil health, farm environmental sustainability and GHG emissions reduction between 1981-2011.

Mixed Grades for Industry Prosperity
Although Manitoba receives an overall "C" grade for industry prosperity, the province does well on agricultural related indicators, such as farm size, farm profitability, and average annual return on investment. However, the province receives "D" grades on food manufacturing and food service establishments' profit margins, spending on research and development.

Province Lags on Food Security
Manitoba receives is lowest grade for household food security, but Manitoba data was only available for 8 of the 16 metrics. The province's average grade for the available metrics is a "D" grade. Manitoba receives "D" grades for its performance on the number of food stores per 1,000 people; food emergency preparedness; and use of food banks by adults. Manitoba has the highest rates of adult food banks usage among the provinces.

In all, 63 food performance metrics were used to evaluate the overall food performance of the provinces. Definitions for the indicators and the full report are available from our e-Library.

Canada's Food Report Card: Provincial Performance was prepared for The Conference Board of Canada's Canadian Food Observatory (CFO). The Observatory monitors progress on improving food performance, spurs the required changes, and encourages action to make the Canadian Food Strategy a reality.

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SOURCE Conference Board of Canada

For further information: Natasha Jamieson, Communications Coordinator, The Conference Board of Canada, Tel.: 613-526-3090 ext. 307, E-mail: corpcomm@conferenceboard.ca; or Juline Ranger, Director of Communications, The Conference Board of Canada, Tel.: 613-526-3090 ext. 431, E-mail: corpcomm@conferenceboard.ca

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