2013 Annual Survey of Aquaculture Industry

Integrated Business Statistics Program (IBSP)

Reporting Guide

This guide is designed to provide additional information as you complete the 2013 Annual Survey of Aquaculture Industry. If you need more information, please call the Statistics Canada Help Line at the number below.

Help Line: 1-800-858-7921

Table of contents

General information
Data-sharing agreements
Additional information
Reporting instructions
Reporting period information
Business activity
Industry Characteristics

General information

What is the Annual Survey of Aquaculture Industry and why is it important?

The Annual Survey of Aquaculture Industry is conducted by Statistics Canada to obtain important information on the aquaculture sector of the Canadian economy. For this survey, aquaculture establishments in Canada are required to provide information on different aspects of their operations such as sales, costs/expenses, salaries and wages. Results from the Annual Survey of Aquaculture help Statistics Canada in compiling key data on the Canadian economy, such as the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The total value of sales is used along with inventories to calculate production statistics. Total sales of individual products, and external trade data, are used to estimate the size of the Canadian market for particular goods.

The data are also published and are used by the business community, trade associations, municipal, provincial/territorial, and federal governments, international organizations and private citizens.

Businesses and governments depend on official statistics to make vital economic decisions. For example:

  • the Bank of Canada relies on the GDP to make decisions that influence interest and exchange rates, which, in turn, affect the cost of doing business.
  • businesses and associations use the survey results to:

- track their performance against industry averages;
- evaluate expansion plans;
- prepare business plans for investors;
- adjust inflation-indexed contracts;
- plan marketing strategies.

Why were you chosen to receive the Annual Survey of Aquaculture Industry?

For most surveys, businesses are selected through random sampling to represent other businesses of the same type in their regions, with similar revenue or number of employees. Some businesses must be included every year as they contribute substantially to their particular industry or region. Smaller businesses must also be sampled if an industry only includes a limited number of businesses in a province or territory, to provide an accurate picture of the industry.

Whenever possible, Statistics Canada does use administrative data already filed with government, such as income tax returns or customs records. However, these sources do not contain all the information required to produce a complete industry profile. This is especially true for large businesses operating in a number of different industries, and in more than one province/territory. Tax records usually provide data for the legal entity but not for the different business units (establishments) that operate in different industries and/or provinces/territories. We need data from these specific business units to produce statistics by industry and by province/territory.

Note: Although Statistics Canada can obtain records from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to create statistics, CRA cannot access any individual survey records from Statistics Canada.

To protect the confidentiality of data provided by respondents, only data in aggregate form are available for use.
Your assistance in completing the enclosed survey is vital to the production of timely and accurate aquaculture statistics. If you experience difficulties in completing this survey, please do not hesitate to call us at 1-800-972-9692.

Is it a legal requirement to complete this survey?

Yes. The Annual Survey of Aquaculture Industry is collected under the authority of the Statistics Act, Revised Statutes of Canada, 1985, Chapter S-19, which stipulates that completion of questionnaires issued under the Act is mandatory. Please visit our website at www.statcan.gc.ca. to consult a copy of the Statistics Act.

Is the information provided kept confidential?

Yes. Your answers are confidential.

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any information it collects which could identify any person, business, or organization, unless consent has been given by the respondent or as permitted by the Statistics Act.

Statistics Canada will use information from this survey for statistical purposes.

Data-sharing agreements

To reduce respondent burden, Statistics Canada has entered into data sharing agreements with provincial and territorial statistical agencies and other government organizations, which have agreed to keep the data confidential and use them only for statistical purposes. Statistics Canada will only share data from this survey with those organizations that have demonstrated a requirement to use the data.

Section 11 of the Statistics Act provides for the sharing of information with provincial and territorial statistical agencies that meet certain conditions. These agencies must have the legislative authority to collect the same information, on a mandatory basis, and the legislation must provide substantially the same provisions for confidentiality and penalties for disclosure of confidential information as the Statistics Act. Because these agencies have the legal authority to compel businesses to provide the same information, consent is not requested and businesses may not object to the sharing of the data.

For this survey, there are Section 11 agreements with the provincial and territorial statistical agencies of Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta, British Columbia, and the Yukon.

The shared data will be limited to business establishments located within the jurisdiction of the respective province or territory.

Section 12 of the Statistics Act provides for the sharing of information with federal, provincial or territorial government organizations. Under Section 12, you may refuse to share your information with any of these organizations by writing a letter of objection to the Chief Statistician and returning it with the completed questionnaire. Please specify the organizations with which you do not want to share your data.

For this survey, there are Section 12 agreements with the statistical agencies of Prince Edward Island, the Northwest Territories and Nunavut and Fisheries and Oceans Canada.

For agreements with provincial and territorial government organizations, the shared data will be limited to business establishments located within the jurisdiction of the respective province or territory.

Record linkages
To enhance the data from this survey and to minimize the reporting burden, Statistics Canada may combine it with information from other surveys or from administrative sources.

Additional information

In cases where information is reported on an amalgamated basis and relates to operations in more than one province or territory, Statistics Canada may allocate a portion of the reported information to these provincial or territorial operations. The allocated information will be shared in accordance with the Section 11 or 12 agreements of the Statistics Act, as described above.

In cases where there is a separate head office, Statistics Canada may adjust the reported revenues of that head office so that those revenues more fully reflect the value of the services the head office provides. In such cases, there will be a corresponding adjustment to the reported expenses of the units served. The adjusted information will be shared in accordance with the Section 11 or 12 agreements of the Statistics Act, as described above.

Please note that Statistics Canada does not share any individual survey information with the Canada Revenue Agency.

Please visit our website at www.statcan.gc.ca or contact Statistics Canada at 1-800-972-9692 for more information about these data-sharing agreements.


General remarks

This guide provides details to help you complete the survey with more exact responses in the following sections.
Industry Characteristics

The data requested can generally be obtained from:

  • the accounting records and financial statements for your business unit;
  • your employment and payroll records;
  • other sources (e.g., production manager).

While filling out the questionnaire:

  • print in ink;
  • report all dollar amounts in Canadian dollars (CAN$);
  • dollar amounts and percentages should be rounded to whole numbers;
  • when precise figures are not available, provide your best estimate.



Please report the data for the business unit identified on the questionnaire. Include only those operations located in Canada.

The first page asks for the name of a contact, and the Contact person section, for the person primarily responsible for completing this questionnaire. Sometimes these are not the same people. Please answer both questions accurately.


Reporting period information

Here are twelve common fiscal periods that fall within the targeted dates:

  • May 1, 2012 to April 30, 2013
  • June 1, 2012 to May 31, 2013
  • July 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013
  • August 1, 2012 to July 31, 2013
  • September 1, 2012 to August 31, 2013
  • October 1, 2012 to September 30, 2013
  • November 1, 2012 to October 31, 2013
  • December 1, 2012 to November 30, 2013
  • January 1, 2013 to December 31, 2013
  • February 1, 2013 to January 31, 2014
  • March 1, 2013 to February 28, 2014
  • April 1, 2013 to March 31, 2014

Here are other examples of fiscal periods that fall within the required dates:

  • September 18, 2012 to September 15, 2013 (e.g., floating year-end)
  • June 1, 2013 to December 31, 2013 (e.g., a newly opened business)

Business activity

The description on file for this business comes from the North American Industrial Classifications System (NAICS). This database contains a limited number of activity classifications. The classifications on file might be applicable for this business, even if it is not exactly how you would describe this business’s main activity.

By selecting "Yes, this is the main activity.", you indicate that the description is applicable, and it describes the main economic activity which typically generates the most revenue for this business.

By selecting "No, this is not the main activity.", you indicate that this description is not applicable as a main or a secondary activity of this business. You will be given a chance to describe this business’s main activity.

If you have selected this box, please provide a description of the nature of your business so that we may properly classify your business unit according to the primary source of revenue and call us at 1-800-972-9692 to obtain further instructions.


  1. Sales of goods and services (e.g., fees, admissions, services revenue)

Report net of returns and allowances.
Sales of goods and services are defined as amounts derived from the sale of goods and services (cash or credit), falling within a business’s ordinary activities. Sales should be reported net of trade discount, value added tax and other taxes based on sales.

Include: Sales from Canadian locations (domestic and export sales); Transfers to other business units or a head office of your firm. Exclude: Transfers into inventory and consignment sales; Federal, provincial and territorial sales taxes and excise duties and taxes; Intercompany sales in consolidated financial statements.

  1. Rental and leasing revenue

Include; Rental or leasing of apartments, commercial buildings, land, office space, residential housing, investments in co-tenancies and co-ownerships, hotel or motel rooms, long and short term vehicle leasing, machinery or equipment, storage lockers, etc.

  1. Commissions

Include: Commissions earned on the sale of products or services by businesses such as advertising agencies, brokers, insurance agents, lottery ticket sales, sales representatives, and travel agencies – Compensation could also be reported under this item (for example, compensation for collecting sales tax).

  1. Subsidies (including grants, donations and fundraising)

Include: Non-repayable grants, contributions and subsidies from all levels of government; Revenue from private sector (corporate and individual) sponsorships, donations and fundraising.

  1. Royalties, rights, licensing and franchise fees

A royalty is defined as a payment received by the holder of a copyright, trademark or patent.

Include: revenue received from the sale or use of all intellectual property rights of copyrighted materials such as musical, literary, artistic or dramatic works, sound recordings or the broadcasting of communication signals.

  1. Dividends

Include: Dividend income; Dividends from Canadian sources; Dividends from foreign sources; Patronage dividends. Exclude: Equity income from investments in subsidiaries or affiliates.

  1. Interest

Include: Investment revenue; Interest from foreign sources; Interest from Canadian bonds and debentures Interest from Canadian mortgage loans; Interest from other Canadian sources. Exclude: Equity income from investments in subsidiaries or affiliates.

  1.  Other revenue – please specify :

Include:  Amounts not included in questions 1to 7 above.

  1. Total revenue

( sum of questions 1 to 8)


  1. Cost of goods sold

Many business units distinguish their costs of materials from their other business expenses (selling, general and administrative). This item is included to allow you to easily record your costs/expenses according to your normal accounting practices.

Include: Cost of raw materials and/or goods purchased for resale – net of discounts earned on purchases; Freight in and duty.

  1. opening inventories
  1. purchases

Include: raw materials, goods purchased for resale and non-returnable containers
Exclude: change in inventories

  1. closing inventories
  1. cost of goods sold

(opening inventories plus purchases minus closing inventories)

  1. Employment costs and expenses
  1. Salaries, wages and commissions

Please report all salaries and wages (including taxable allowances and employment commissions as defined on the T4 – statement of remuneration paid) before deductions for this reporting period.

Include: Vacation pay; Bonuses (including profit sharing); Employee commissions; Taxable allowances (e.g., room and board, vehicle allowances, gifts such as airline tickets for holidays); Severance pay.
Exclude: All payments and expenses associated with casual labour and outside contract workers. (report these amounts at sub-question 3 - Subcontracts).

  1. Employee benefits

Include contributions to: Health plans; Insurance plans; Employment insurance; Pension plans; Workers’ compensation; Association dues; Contributions to any other employee benefits such as child care and supplementary unemployment  benefit (SUB) plans; Contributions to provincial and territorial health and education payroll taxes.

  1. Subcontracts

Subcontract expense refers to the purchasing of services from outside of the company rather than providing them in-house.

Include: Hired casual labour and outside contract workers; Custom work and contract work; Subcontract and outside labour; Hired labour

  1. Research and development fees

Expenses from activities conducted with the intention of making a discovery that could either lead to the development of new products or procedures, or to the improvement of existing products or procedures.

  1. Professional and business fees 

Include: Legal services; Accounting and auditing fees; Consulting fees; Education and training fees; Appraisal fees; Management and administration fees; Property management fees; Information technology (IT) consulting and service fees (purchased); Architectural fees; Engineering fees; Scientific and technical service fees; Other consulting fees (management, technical and scientific); Veterinary fees; Fees for human health services; Payroll preparation fees; All other professional and business service fees.
Exclude:  Service fees paid to head office (report at sub-question 21 - All other costs and expenses).

  1. Utilities 

Utility expenses related to operating your business unit such as water, electricity, gas, heating and hydro.

Include: Diesel, fuel wood, natural gas, oil and propane; Sewage.
Exclude: Energy expenses covered in your rental and leasing contracts; Telephone, Internet and other telecommunications; Vehicle fuel (report at sub-question 21 - All other expenses)

  1. Office and computer-related expenses

Include: Office stationery and supplies, paper and other supplies for photocopiers, printers and fax machines; Postage and courier (used in the day-to-day office business activity); Diskettes and computer upgrade expenses; Data processing.
Exclude: Telephone, Internet and other telecommunication expenses.(report this amount at sub-question 8 - Telephone, Internet and other telecommunications).

  1. Telephone, Internet and other telecommunications

Include: Internet; Telephone and telecommunications; Cellular telephone; Fax machine; Pager.

  1. Business taxes, licenses and permits

Include: Property taxes paid directly and property transfer taxes; Vehicle license fees; Beverage taxes and business taxes; Trade license fees; Membership fees and professional license fees; Provincial capital tax.

  1. Royalties, franchise fees and memberships

Include: Amounts paid to holders of patents, copyrights, performing rights and trademarks; Gross overriding royalty expenses and direct royalty costs; Resident and non-resident royalty expenses; Franchise fees.
Exclude: Crown royalties

  1. Crown charges

Federal or provincial royalty, tax, lease or rental payments made in relation to the acquisition, development or ownership of Canadian resource properties.  

Include: Crown royalties; Crown leases and rentals; Oil sand leases; Stumpage fees.

  1. Rental and leasing

Include: Lease rental expenses, real estate rental expenses, condominium fees and equipment rental expenses; Motor vehicle rental and leasing expenses; Studio lighting and scaffolding; Machinery and equipment rental expenses; Storage expenses; Road and construction equipment rental; Fuel and other utility costs covered in your rental and leasing contracts.

  1. Repair and maintenance

Include: Buildings and structures; Machinery and equipment; Security equipment; Vehicles; Costs related to materials, parts and external labour associated with these expenses; Janitorial and cleaning services and garbage removal.

  1. Amortization and depreciation

Include: Direct cost depreciation of tangible assets and amortization of leasehold improvements; Amortization of intangible assets (e.g., amortization of goodwill, patents, franchises, copyrights, trademarks, deferred charges, organizational costs).

  1. Insurance

Insurance recovery income should be deducted from insurance expenses.

Include: Professional and other liability insurance; Motor vehicle and property insurance; Executive life insurance; Bonding, business interruption insurance and fire insurance.

  1. Advertising, marketing, promotion, meals and entertainment

Include: Newspaper advertising and media expenses; Catalogues, presentations and displays; Tickets for theatre, concerts and sporting events for business promotion; Fundraising expenses; Meals, entertainment and hospitality purchases for clients.

  1. Travel, meetings and conventions

Include: Travel expenses; Meeting and convention expenses, seminars; Passenger transportation (e.g., airfare, bus, train, etc.); Accommodations; Travel allowance and  meals while travelling; Other travel expenses.

  1. Financial services 

Include: Explicit service charges for financial services; Credit and debit card commissions and charges; Collection expenses and transfer fees; Registrar and transfer agent fees; Security and exchange commission fees; Other financial service fees.
Exclude: Interest expenses (report at sub-question 19 - Interest expense).

  1. Interest expense

Report the cost of servicing your company’s debt.

Include: Interest; Bank charges; Finance charges; Interest payments on capital leases; Amortization of bond discounts; Interest on short-term and long-term debt, mortgages, bonds and debentures.

  1. Other non-production-related costs and expenses

Include: Charitable donations and political contributions; Bad debt expense; Loan losses; Provisions for loan losses (minus bad debt recoveries); Inventory adjustments.

  1. All other costs and expenses (including intracompany expenses)

Production costs; Pipeline operations, drilling, site restoration; Gross overriding royalties; Other producing property rentals; Well operating, fuel and equipment; Other lease rentals; Other direct costs; Equipment hire and operation; Log yard expenses, forestry costs, logging road costs; Freight-in and duty; Overhead expenses allocated to costs of sales; Other expenses; Cash over/short (negative expenses); Reimbursement of parent company expenses; Warranty expenses; Recruiting expenses; General and administrative expenses; Interdivisional expenses; Interfund transfers (minus expense recoveries); Exploration and development (including prospect/geological, well abandonment & dry holes, exploration expenses, development expenses); Amounts not included in sub-questions (a) to (t) above.

  1. Total expenses

(sum of questions 1 to 21

Industry Characteristics


Revenue should be reported net of excise and provincial or territorial sales taxes, HST/GST, trade discounts, returns and allowances, and charges for outward transportation by common or contract carriers. Sales denominated in foreign currency should be converted into Canadian dollars at the exchange rate on the day of transaction. Dollar amounts and percentages should be rounded to whole numbers. When precise figures are not available, please provide your best estimate.

1  to 6 Production of finfish (hatchery or grow-out)

This category is comprised of establishments primarily engaged in farm-raising finfish. These establishments use some form of intervention in the rearing process to enhance production, such as keeping animals in captivity, regular stocking and feeding of animals, and protecting them from predators.

Finfish production is reported as gutted head-on and the value is based on a farm-gate value.

Exclude: establishments primarily engaged in catching or taking fish and other aquatic animals from their natural habitat.

7 to 10 Production of shellfish (seed or grow-out)

This category is comprised of establishments primarily engaged in farm-raising shellfish. These establishments use some form of intervention in the rearing process to enhance production, such as keeping animals in captivity, regular stocking and feeding of animals, and protecting them from predators.

Shellfish is reported as whole and the value is based on a farm-gate value.

Exclude: establishments primarily engaged in catching or taking fish and other aquatic animals from their natural habitat.

  1. Aquaculture services
  1. Sales of goods purchased for resale

Report sales of goods that have not been processed or altered in your business unit and that have been
purchased and resold in the same condition.

  1. Consulting revenue
  1. Sales of all other goods and services produced – please specify:

(e.g., other molluscs, aquaculture by-products, seed)

  1. Total sales of goods and services

(sum of lines 1 to 14)


Operating expenses

What were this business’s operating expenses for each of the following goods and services?
Include: all expenses within or outside Canada recorded by this business unit.
Exclude : GST/HST, PST and QST

  1. Feed
  1. Therapeutants

(e.g., pesticides, drugs, vaccinations)

  1. Purchases of fish eggs, live fish, mollusc seed, spat and live larvae for grow-out
  1. Purchases of fish eggs, live fish, mollusc seed, spat and live larvae for processing
  1. Purchases of goods for resale

(in the same condition as purchased)

  1. All other purchases
  1. Management fees or any other service fees paid to head office and other business support units

Management fees or any other service fees paid to head office (e.g., legal fees, advertising fees, insurance) and other business support units (e.g., warehouses, sales centres, trucking facilities).

  1. Transportation, shipping (contracted out), warehousing, storage, postage and courier

Report transportation and storage costs/expenses if they can be reported separately from purchases.

• Freight transport services by air, sea, or land (including rental with operator);
• Postage and courier expenses (including local messenger and delivery);
• Storage or warehousing services;
• Moving services.

• Shipping using own vehicles.

  1. Processing services

Processing services are the costs incurred when another company provides services related to gutting, cleaning, slitting, or shelling.

  1. Veterinary fees
  1. All other expenses
  1. Total operating expenses

(sum of lines 16 to 26)

What were this business’s inventories for each of the following goods?
Inventories are to be reported at book value (i.e., the value maintained in the accounting records).

Include: inventory owned by this business unit within or outside Canada
(including inventory held at any warehouse, selling outlet, in transit or
on consignment).
Exclude: inventory held on consignment for others.

  1. Raw materials

(e.g., feed)

  1. Goods in process

(e.g., in pools, pens, on beaches and on grow-out sites)

  1. Finished products

(e.g., finfish, molluscs and crustacea ready for market)

  1. Goods purchased for resale in the same condition as purchased
  1. Value of total inventory

(sum of lines 28 to 31)


  1. What was the average number of people employed during the reporting period?

Include: full-time, part-time and temporary employees and employees absent with pay.
Exclude: contract workers who are not part of your payroll.