One of Field Agent’s most popular reports on the Canadian grocery industry is back! The June 2021 edition of the Canadian Fluid Milk report is the most comprehensive look at the prices Canadians pay for one of the most common items in the Grocery basket – 2% Milk.
Field Agent Canada conducted a cross-country price survey on fluid milk prices at 185 retailers in 20 markets from coast-to-coast between May 7th to June 1st, 2021. The survey compared prices recorded at the same outlets back in March 2020, highlighting any shifts that have taken place over the last 14 months. Additionally, we looked at prices for milk at Walmart stores in five border communities in the US to provide a comparative benchmark of the cost of similar products in the larger US market.
Milk has been in the news lately so this report is timely. There have been plenty of reports of increasing food prices across Canada and we see that in the milk category with the average price of 4L milk increasing by 3.6% since our last survey back in March 2020. “We are seeing the price of milk increasing in 18 out of 20 markets surveyed with the only exceptions being Charlottetown, PE and Victoria / Langford, BC. Milk is one of those items making the total at the bottom of the grocery receipt go higher.” observed Jeff Doucette, General Manager of Field Agent Canada.
Milk is also at the centre of the Biden administration’s first USMCA challenge where it is alleged that the Canadian system of quotas is preventing US milk producers from importing its products to Canada. “It is an age-old gripe of Canadians that the price of gasoline and the price of milk is so much cheaper in the US than in Canada.” explained Doucette. “We found 3.78L milk in Amherst, NY for $2.59 ($3.32 CAD) which is 25% less than the price of the cheapest Canadian 4L jug. There is no doubt that open borders would reduce the milk price for Canadian consumers but the government is unlikely to allow that milk to flow due to the powerful dairy farmers lobby.”
Where is the cheapest milk in Canada? For the 4L size it is in Sudbury, ON where shoppers are paying an average of $4.68 per 4L jug. And the most expensive milk continues to be in St. John’s, NL where 4L jugs are not available and shoppers are paying a whopping $3.90 on average for a small 2L carton.
“Since we first launched this report in 2015 we have been highlighting the inefficiencies and inequalities of the milk market in Canada which has wide swings from city-to-city while the price of a 2L Coca-Cola is essentially the same in every Walmart across Canada. We will continue to publish this report so consumers have the facts to raise to their local politicians to fight for change.” stated Doucette
Contact for Interview / Additional Information:
GENERAL MANAGER – CANADA
Field Agent Canada | 403-966-7467