Since 1972, Alberta sheep producers have strongly supported their provincial organization, started as the Alberta Sheep & Wool Commission and renamed Alberta Lamb Producers (ALP) in 2009. Presently, Alberta has a thriving sheep industry producing quality lamb with over 1550 producers and ranks third in Canadian sheep and lamb inventories (134 000 head).
ALP proudly works for every producer in our province to enhance advocacy, education, communication, research, and community-building for a stronger sheep industry. The sheep industry can rely on ALP to provide:
- Valued communications through N’ewesletter, N’ewesline, SheepCentral Alberta (YouTube), Facebook and www.ablamb.ca
- Access to free educational resources, like the ALP management modules, that cover everything from health to feeding; predation to business to help develop more efficient and productive operations.
- A hub for industry information, contacts, and resources.
- Advocacy at every level of government and industry to promote industry interests and representation.
- Collaboration with government and researchers to work towards solutions to issues impacting the sheep industry, including the development of practical management tools. Leveraging of industry funds typically means three dollars or more of external funding for every producer check-off dollar received – a highly leveraged return on producer investment.
Alberta Lamb Producers represents 1550 sheep and lamb farmers in Alberta.
30 different breeds of sheep are currently being raised in Alberta. For more information about specific breeds, visit Alberta Sheep Breeders.
Lamb is loaded with good nutrition ideal from infancy to our older adult years. It is packed with protein to provide satiety and satisfaction, thereby helping with weight management. Lamb is one of the best sources of well-absorbed iron, as well as vitamin B12 which are both important for making red blood cells to transport oxygen in the body. Even small servings deliver abundant nutrients such as riboflavin, selenium, niacin, phosphorus, zinc and other vitamins and minerals essential for health.
Canadian lamb is loaded with protein and lean on calories. Per 75 grams (the size of a deck of cards) cooked foreshank:
• A serving of lamb provides only 150 calories of a typical 2000 calorie daily diet for adults*
<6 grams fat*
• A serving of lamb provides only 6 grams of fat (9% of the Daily Value)*
Nationally, sheep numbers increased 2.6% to 1.055 million head, ewe numbers were up 1% to 512,100 head and lambs retained for breeding were up 1.8% to 86,300 head. Lambs for marketing saw the largest year-over-year increase, up 4.9% or 20,200 head nationally. Across Canada, Saskatchewan and British Columbia both reported a 2,000 head year-over-year inventory decline. All other provinces reported larger inventories, led by Ontario with a gain of 15,000 head, followed by Alberta with an additional 11,000 head. The majority of July 1st inventory gains were captured in the market lamb category.
The Alberta sheep and lamb industry increased by 5.7% to 204,000 head. Alberta ewe numbers were up 2.2% to 94,800 head and lambs retained for breeding were up 1.1% to 18,800 head. Lambs for marketing increased 11.5% to 85,500 head. Alberta has 19.3% of the national flock, which has been stable over the last number of years but is down from the peak of 34.7% in the early 1990s.