The value of farmland in Manitoba increased in line with the national average in 2023, however, the Eastman region saw prices increase at a slower rate. 

The average value of Canadian farmland increased by 11.5 per cent, slightly less than the 12.8 per cent increase reported in 2022, according to the latest Farm Credit Canada Farmland Values Report.  

“Farmland prices have continued to increase at a rapid pace over the last couple of years, even when economic conditions suggested the growth should slow,” said J.P. Gervais, FCC’s chief economist. “A limited supply of available farmland combined with a robust demand from farm operations is driving that growth.”  

The highest average provincial increases in farmland values were observed in Saskatchewan, Quebec, Manitoba and Ontario, with double-digit average increases of 15.7, 13.3, 11.1 and 10.7 per cent, respectively.  

Chris Prejet is an appraiser with FCC. He notes “the Manitoba average was 11.1 percent but Eastman was actually the lowest of the five regions at 6.7 percent. It is important to note that Eastman, of the five regions, has the second highest dollar-per-acre average and it does differentiate from the other regions in characteristics, markets, farms and operations.” 

For context farmland is valued at $5,700 per acre in the Eastman region, and only the Central Plains-Pembina Valley region is higher with farmland valued at $6,400 per acre. 

CHARTA graph shows Manitoba's farmland values by region. Graph provided by FCC.

So, what does this mean for local farmers?

Prejet says “There's different takes on that as it does present some challenge for younger farmers or farmers trying to get into the industry, but at the same time it does also show that there is strong demand for land, strong demand to grow and those are all operations that are working, putting money back into the community.” 

He adds “it does show the strength of the industry and the demand for for AG commodities in Canada in general.” 

Gervais agrees, noting the land market remains resilient. 

“Purchasing land in the year ahead will come with careful consideration of the price and timing. Some operations will prefer to wait and see where land values will settle while others may move more quickly should adjacent land become available, or simply because it fits their strategic business plans.”  

The number of farmland transactions in 2023 is estimated to have declined slightly relative to 2022 as farm operations exercised more caution towards investment decisions. “The expectation of weaker farm revenues and elevated borrowing costs and input prices are expected to stretch out this cautious environment for farmland transactions into 2024.” 

You can download the full report here to review the provincial values by area.