Lethbridge Herald (Newspaper) - February 20, 1973, Lethbridge, Alberta
Tuesday, February 20, 1973 - THE LETHBRIDGE KESALD - 15 Livestock nutrionist explains test process Country elevator rationalization and railway line abandonment. The terms sound cold and calculating, even to the hardest constitution. Briefly, country elevator rationalization is the removal of uneconomic delivery points, points which don't handle enough grain to warrant the expense: The alternative to country elevators hasn't been spelled out completely but government and the grain handling companies appear destined to make a change. Railway abandonment. When something is bsing money or when the ship is sinking, the easy way out is abandonment. You'll Go BANANAS OVER THE GREAT DEALS ON THESE GOODWILL USED CARS & TRUCKS 1971 G.M..C. % TON r^:.p:s:..$3450 1970 G.M.C. Vt TON V-8, 4 spd 1969 FORD V4 TON 44xsPd6 cyl:......$1350 1967 G.M.C. Vi TON 6 cyl., 3 speed, J I JU 1968 FORD RANCH WAGON pvs8; �pub�".......$1550 1965 PONTIAC 1 PARISIENNE 4 dr. hdt., V-8, �C7H auto., p.s., p.b. . . . 3*5/ 3 Good Selection Of NEW & USED SKI-DOOS B� & R� SERVICE CARDSTON PHONE 653-3672 That is unless heavy subsidization is available or the role can be plugged. From all reports, to date, country elevator rationalization is a foregone conclusion. The question is not why but when. The Canadian Grain Commission has published a booklet recording the country elevator point receipts from the W70-71 crop year. At the timia the country elevator system was started in 1B07, it was felt that the elevators would have to move grain . equal to 2% times' capacity to be considered a viable operation. Very few country elevator points in Southern Albsrta reached this iigure in the 1970-71 crop year. Without elevators along railway lines wliich lead to siuail or non-existent communities, it becomes ridiculous to expect continued operation. Stricly agriculturally speaking, it would appear ridiculous. The elevators not reaching the desired turnover capacity are being subsidized by the few successful elevator points. One could look at the problem as a cost factor to the entire grains industry but still it is an unnecessary cost factor to farmers living in the viable areas. But can we in Southern Alberta, particularly, loDk only at the agricultural economics scene? The total economy of Southern Alberta is an offspring of agriculture and the related industries but something even bigger than dollars keeps coming to the front. It is called life. We have in Southern Alberta a rural-urban way of life which has a combination of all the good of the big and the little. Americans come to Canada as tourists and marvel at our way ot life. The railway, historically, has to be considered the greatest input to this way of life as the west expanded. If the railways pull out of rural Southern Alberta, the prediction here and in other locales is that land prices will depre- Perkins named advisor Dr. Brian B. Perkins has joined the Agriculture Canada Economics Branch as a policy advisor. His special interests include public policy, labor mobility, economic development and price policy. A graduate of the Universities of London, Manchester and Michigan State, Dr. Perkins has worked in Canada since 1958. He was formerly a professor in agricultural economics at the University of Guelph, and in 1968-70 acted as a policy advisor to the Government of Columbia. date. Only the giants on the land will be able to do without the essential services offered by a small town - they will be their own essential service. For several years now, economies, of scale have been driving the smaller farmers off the land. They simply can't compete with the big boys. Rationalization of tlie country elevator points wV! do even more to drive the umall farmer Iron his land. Other small farmers can't take these places because they won't be able to make a go of it either and the big farmers and ranchers will be the only ones to make use of the depreciated land values. For one or two customers, small town stores can't operate. All these people will have to congregate to the cities. Our way of life is in jeopardy. Some say it is inevitable, some say there will always be a -few diebards. The problem comes down to strictly a mutter of dollars versus a way of life. We know what usually wins when money is involved but maybe this time something different will bap-pen. 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