The paper presents production function estimates of human capital and business research and development knowledge for a panel of Canadian food manufacturing industries over the period 1993-2004. Our results show that physical and human capitals are major determinants of food manufacturing productivity. Business research and development (R&D) was found not to be a major factor shaping food manufacturing productivity. This result is consistent with previous studies showing that not only is R&D an important factor but engineering practices, information technologies, and equipment suppliers are a key ingredients shaping the technological landscape of food manufacturing. In addition, we tested the robustness of our food manufacturing sample results to a larger sample of manufacturing industries (food, wood, paper, fertilizer) over a shorter time period. Our results show from employing different panel model estimators business R&D was a significant variable impacting manufacturing productivity.