Alberta farmland values increased an average of 2.9 per cent during the first half of 2010, following gains of 3.8 and 1.0 per cent in the two previous reporting periods.
Values increased by an average of 0.4 per cent per month between January 1 and June 30, 2010, which mirrored the same average monthly increase during 2009. Farmland values in Alberta have been rising since 1993.
The more modest increase during the first six months of 2010 compared with the last six months of 2009 was due in large part to slowing urban sprawl, coupled with a decrease in the amount of land purchased by speculative interests.
Southern Alberta experienced steady demand from large landholders looking to expand operations in traditional dry land areas. Irrigation land remained in high demand, with land suitable for specialty crops driving the market.
In central Alberta, the transfer of family farms between generations was a main driver of land values. A decrease in the expansion of large land holdings and continuing challenges in the beef and hog industries contributed to a more moderate increase in land values compared to the previous period.
Source: Farm Credit Corporation Website