Red Deer—Lacombe is a major centre of the petrochemical industry. In Lacombe County you can find NOVA Chemicals, the world's largest ethylene production facility, as well as Dow Chemicals. There are also other energy companies, making transportation in support of the oil and energy industry another important economic pillar.
Agriculture is the traditional base of the economy, with some of the province’s most fertile lands. The region has diversified into the agri-food business, including cheese production, yogurt production, and greenhouses. Other businesses associated with the agriculture industry include fertilizer companies, feed and agri-supply businesses, a seed cleaning plant, the Lacombe Research Centre, and veterinarian clinics. Central Alberta is home to a large number of intensive livestock operations.