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Logging, 2021

Released: 2022-12-19

Revenue from logging activities

$10.9 billion


13.6% increase

(annual change)

Revenue increases driven by price

Total revenue from all logging activities increased 16.3% (+$1.7 billion) from 2020 to $11.9 billion in 2021. The logging industry consists of two sub-industries: logging (except contract) and contract logging. Overall, total revenue was split almost equally between the two sub-industries, logging (except contract) contributed 52% ($6.2 billion), while contract logging contributed 48% ($5.7 billion).

Revenue from logging activities, which excludes revenues from sources other than logging, such as secondary business activities, was up 13.6% (+$1.3 billion) from 2020, reaching $10.9 billion in 2021. This increase in revenues was driven by a 25.8% increase in the average annual prices of logs, pulpwood and other forestry products, as measured by the Raw Materials Price Index.

Chart 1  Chart 1: Revenue from logging activities, 2012 to 2021
Revenue from logging activities, 2012 to 2021

Expenses increase less than revenue

Total expenses from logging activities increased in 2021, up 13.2% (+$1.3 billion) from 2020 to $11.2 billion, less than the increase in total revenue. As a result, for every dollar earned in total revenue for both types of loggers, total expenses represented 94 cents in 2021. This was less than in 2020, when contract loggers had spent 97 cents for every dollar earned on expenses, while loggers (except contract) spent 96 cents.

The cost of materials and supplies increased 16.8% (+$751.1 million) in 2021, reaching $5.2 billion for all logging activities. Materials and supplies accounted for 59% of total expenses for loggers (except contract), while they represented 34% for contract loggers. The cost of materials and supplies is made up of purchases of raw materials and components, repairs and maintenance, payments to subcontractors and stumpage fees.

In 2021, total salaries and wages for the logging industry increased 9.1% (+$153.4 million) to $1.8 billion. Contract loggers' share of total salaries and wages was 68% ($1.2 billion), compared with 32% ($589.3 million) for loggers (except contract). For every dollar of expenses, contract loggers spent more on salaries and wages, at 23 cents, than loggers (except contract) at 10 cents. This difference can be partly explained by the fact that loggers (except contract) are logging on an own-account basis and hire subcontractors, which results in some of the salary and wage expenses being classified under subcontract fees.

British Columbia and Quebec revenues rebound

In 2021, the top five provinces, which made up 97% of total revenue from logging activities, mainly saw increases. The most notable increases in revenues from logging activities were recorded in British Columbia (+$1.1 billion; +24.6%), Quebec (+$207.3 million; +10.0%) and New Brunswick (+$86.8 million: +13.4%). Two provinces experienced a decrease, Ontario (-$41.6 million; -4.0%) and Alberta (-$36.8 million; -3.1%).

  Note to readers

The logging industry is composed of two sub-industries: logging (except contract) and contract logging. One of the main features of businesses specialized in logging (except contract) is that they own the rights to harvest timber. The largest proportion of revenues for contract loggers comes from logging services provided on a fee or contract basis, while the largest share of revenues for the logging (except contract) industry are from logging operations on an own-account basis.

Data for 2020 have been revised.

Data are collected for the 12-month fiscal period that ends on or between April 1, 2021, and March 31, 2022. The collection period for reference year 2020 includes the events and business disruptions around COVID-19 and, in some industries, response rates have been lower. As a result, there may be larger-than-normal revisions to the data. For more information on data quality and revisions, please refer to Annual Survey of Manufacturing and Logging Industries .

Changes in methodology were made to the Annual Survey of Manufacturing and Logging Industries beginning with the reference year 2013. Users should therefore use caution when comparing current data with historical data from before 2013. For more information on the methodology changes, consult the document "The Integrated Business Statistics Program" in the Behind the data feature of the Statistics Canada website.

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; or Media Relations (

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