Agriculture market in Colombia 

Industry highlights


Agriculture's contribution to Colombia's GDP in 2022


estimated total government budget allocated towards agricultural expenditure in 2024

4.8 million

Jobs in Colombia's agriculture sector


of total Canadian exports to Colombia are cereals and fertilizers (650m USD)


of the food consumed in Colombia is imported (15.9m tons in 2022)

$7.7 B USD

Total value of Colombia's agricultural exports in 2022

Colombia is the third most populous country in Latin America with 51 million inhabitants in 2022, most of whom reside in urban areas. Colombia is a country of regions, and the main cities (each with over 1 million inhabitants) are Bogota, Medellin, Cali, Barranquilla, and Cartagena.
Venezuelan immigrants are an additional and relevant demographic factor. The Colombian government estimates that 2.5 million Venezuelans live in Colombia, a population with a demand for ethnic foods such as pastas, black beans, rice, and flours.
Colombia is the 42nd largest importer of agri-food and seafood products in the world. In 2020, Colombia's recorded imports amounted to Can $9.4 billion, with Canada's share comprising 6.4%, equivalent to Can $600.1 million.

Key opportunities for Canadian agriculture companies in Colombia:

  • Grains and legumes (wheat, lentils, chickpeas, barley, and beans)
  • Animal proteins (pork, beef, fish, and seafoods products)
  • Livestock genetics (live animals, embryos and semen of cattle, pigs, poultry, and small ruminant)
  • Processed and value-added foods (for retail sale in large stores)
  • Agri-tech or precision agriculture solutions for enhanced productivity in local crops

Notable challenges for Canadian agriculture companies in Colombia:

  • Political and economic uncertainty due to the recently installed leftwing Petro government
  • Lack of efficient internal infrastructure in term of roads from ports to consumer center cities
  • No use of large ground transportation systems (trains) to optimize logistic costs
  • Consumers are very sensitive to price
  • Depreciation of Colombian Peso (COP)
  • Regulatory complexity for human and animal foods with 2 independent sanitary agencies

Colombian business landscape:

Colombia has a geographical advantage due to access to both the Atlantic and Pacific oceans and ports on both oceans for bulk (solid and liquid) and container cargo. Primary ports are Buenaventura, Cartagena, Barranquilla, and Santa Marta.

Colombia is a net exporter of agri-food and seafood products with a trade surplus of Can$1.1 billion in 2020. Colombia's agri-food and seafood imports increased at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.5% from 2016 to 2020.

The top five agri-food and seafood suppliers to Colombia represented Can$6.5 billion or 69.2% of total imports in 2020. Top supplying countries to Colombia were predominantly Latin American countries. The largest supplying non-Latin American countries were the United States, Canada, Spain, China, and the United Kingdom. The top five imports to Colombia from 2016 to 2020 were corn, oilcakes, wheat and meslin, soybean oil and fish, prepared or preserved.

In 2022, Canada had an agri-food and seafood trade surplus of Can$16.6 million with Colombia. Colombia's agri-food and seafood imports from Canada have increased by a CAGR of 16.5% from 2018 to 2022. Top imports from Canada were wheat and meslin, dried leguminous vegetables, pork meats, and food preparations.

Canada exports agricultural products that are not in competition with national agriculture. In fact, these are complementary to basic products not available locally.


Given its geographical and economic conditions, the Colombian market is ideal for business development in agriculture and agri-food sectors detailed above.

Colombian companies are mostly small to medium sized and are interested in acquiring Canadian agricultural supplies not produced locally (grains and pulses), high quality animal protein products (beef and pork meats), breeding material and genetics to enhance local animal productivity, new packaged products at mid-range prices for retails (due to local purchasing power considerations), and modern agri-tech capacities to improve field and animal farming yields.

Upcoming projects and events

  • SIAL CANADA 2024 (Montreal): Colombian buyers' delegation and B2B program, May 15-17
  • Feria Alimentec 2024 (Bogota @ Corferias fairgrounds) – Canadian pavilion at this food and beverages exhibition and B2B program (bi-annual event), June 18-21
  • Americas Food & Beverages Show (AFBS) Miami, FL., USA. Canadian pavilion targeting regional food and beverages markets (Colombia, Central America, Caribbean islands), September 16-18
  • Expo-Agrofuturo 2024 (Medellín) Agri-tech, agricultural and livestock production equipment, October 23-25
  • Agroexpo (Bogota @ Corferias fairgrounds): Colombia's largest agricultural and animal exhibition show (bi-annual event), July 17-2

For more resources and information on the agriculture market in Colombia please contact:

Mr. Juan-Carlos Navia, Agriculture Trade Commissioner

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