Canada’s current industry landscape: Which industries are dying and thriving?

Canada has seen many changes in the profitability of its industries, especially at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Many industries have begun to decline, while others have managed to flourish.

Aspiring business owners may wonder which industries are currently viable to tap into. Continue reading to learn about some of Canada’s growing and declining industries.



The hotel industry was hit hard during the COVID-19 pandemic as international travel was halted. However, since travel restrictions have loosened, the industry has slowly regrown. One report by Commercial Real Estate Services Canada found that in June and July 2022, the hotel industry saw Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR) exceed 2019 levels, indicating that the industry is beginning to return to its pre-pandemic state.  

This growth can be attributed to loosening travel restrictions, particularly among domestic and U.S. travellers. Additionally, event scheduling has returned across the country, encouraging increased travel and the need for hotels. 


This industry has been greatly aided by increasing internet traffic over the past few years, especially since online shopping has become more popular.

According to an article by Canada Post, nine out of 10 e-commerce businesses experienced an increase in sales from 2021 to 2022, with more than 35 per cent saying their sales grew by 20 per cent or more. A market forecast predicts that the e-commerce market will see an 11.03 per cent increase in revenue by the end of 2023.


Canadian movie theatres’ performance largely depends on the reception of major film releases, so this industry tends to be uncertain. In addition, much of the industry’s revenue is driven by Cineplex, which accounts for more than 60 per cent of the market. 

However, this industry is still profitable. Statistics Canada reported that Canadian film productions saw a 20.2 per cent revenue increase from 2019 to 2021. This number continued to increase as restrictions were loosened further, and this growth may be attributed to a buildup of projects delayed during the pandemic.

Full-service restaurants

The restaurant industry has seen a significant revival after the pandemic. A report published by Circana found that restaurant visits increased by 11 per cent in the first quarter of 2023. Additionally, despite increased prices, spending increased by 18 per cent. 

This increase can be largely attributed to the gradual change in people’s behaviour outside the home, such as the return to in-person work, as morning meal demand increased by 13 per cent in 2023.


Newspaper publishing

The newspaper industry continues to face serious competition from digital media. A 2023 report found that revenue in this industry decreased by 9.5 per cent from 2018 to 2023. Printed newspaper sales have declined as online outlets offer the same material more conveniently and at a lower cost.

The pandemic was believed to be a huge factor in this decline as consumers were stuck at home and primarily engaged with online news stories.

Canned fruit and vegetable processing

With increasing health concerns, this industry has seen a recent decline. Many consumers are turning to fresh produce goods, so demand for canned goods has decreased steadily. According to a recent report, the revenue in this industry is expected to drop by 1.2 per cent by the end of 2023.


Similarly to the newspaper industry, bookstores have seen serious competition from online retailers and e-books. A report says that although bookstore revenue increased between 2013 and 2018, the industry experienced a 7.4 percent annual market size drop from 2018 to 2023. Online retailers can offer products at more competitive prices, slowly driving the profitability of bookstores downward.

Paper mills

The demand for paper products has decreased in recent years, and the industry is expected to decline. A 2023 report found that the industry’s revenue is expected to decrease by 6.4 per cent from 2018 to 2023, with a predicted 2.3 per cent revenue drop in 2023 alone. As discussed earlier, there is a decreasing demand for newspapers in favour of digital media. However, this lowered demand expands past newspapers to include other paper-based products, such as office supplies. 

Keep in mind that industry performances constantly fluctuate and may change without warning. Just because an industry is in decline now doesn’t mean it will always be that way, and the same applies to growing industries. Continue to research industry trends to remain updated on the latest industry changes. 


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