The Canadian Province of Manitoba is located in the countries prairie region. The province covers roughly 250,900 square miles or 649,950 square kilometres in total area. It has a mainly continental weather condition because of its flat topography. As well, the province of Manitoba boasts more than one hundred ten thousand lakes. Agriculture is the main economy staple, concentrated mainly within the fertile southern and western parts of the province of Manitoba. Other main industries include: transportation, manufacturing, mining, forestry, tourism and energy. There is a growing aboriginal population in Manitoba along with a significant Franco-Manitoban minority. English Canadian is the largest ethnic group in the province.
Manitoba's largest city and capital is the City of Winnipeg. The city of Winnipeg is the 8th biggest Census Metropolitan Area in the country, while being the home to over 60 percent of the population of the province, based on statistics. Winnipeg is home to the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba. In addition to being the seat of the government, the city is likewise home to the Manitoba Court of Appeal that is the highest court in the jurisdiction. The majority of the cultural attractions, as well as all four of the province's universities and 4 of the professional sports team are situated within Winnipeg.
"Manitoba" is a name believed to originate from the Ojibwe, Cree or Assiniboine language and literally means "strait of the spirit" or "lake of the prairies". In the 17th century, fur traders initially came in the area. In 1870, after the Red River Rebellion, Manitoba became a province of Canada. The province of Manitoba was hit hard by the Great Depression and a general strike occurred within Winnipeg during the year 1919. These events caused the creation of what would eventually be the New Democratic Party of Manitoba.
The natural resources of the province are a main economic driver, providing a strong economic base in agriculture, tourism, mining, oil, energy and forestry. Amongst the most important industries is agriculture and is located mostly within the province's southern part. There is grain farming happening as far north as The Pas. Around 12% of farmland within Canada is located within the province of Manitoba. The most common kind of farming is cattle farming coming in at 34.6%, next is assorted grains at nineteen percent and oilseed comes in at 7.9%.
Within Canada, the province of Manitoba is the biggest producer of dry beans, sunflower seeds and among the biggest producers of potatoes. Portage la Prairie has a major processing plant situated within the centre of the town and is the home of Simplot Plants and McCain Foods, which produce much of the French Fries for McDonald's, Wendy's and many other fast food restaurant chains. As well, one of the largest oat mills in the world, referred to as Can-Oat Milling likewise has a plant in the municipality.
The biggest employers in the province are government-funded institutions comprising crown corporations and services like for example universities and hospital and government jobs. Some of the major private-sector employers comprise Cargill Ltd, The Great-West Life Assurance Company and James Richardson and Sons Ltd. The province of Manitoba also has big manufacturing and tourism sectors. The wildlife attractions in Churchill's Arctic area are also a major tourist attraction. The town of Churchill is a world capital for beluga whale watchers and polar bear watchers. The province of Manitoba is the only province in the nation which has an Arctic deep-water seaport. This seaport links to the shortest shipping routes between Europe, North America and Asia.