Winnipeg Free Press Newspaper Archives May 16 2015, Page 46

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Winnipeg Free Press (Newspaper) - May 16, 2015, Winnipeg, Manitoba C M Y K PAGE B10 B 10 SATURDAY, MAY 16, 2015 BUSINESS winnipegfreepress. com WORK ENGLISH at We Bring Language Training to Your Workplace 204- 944- 8833 271 Portage Avenue manitobastart. com Citizenship and Immigration Canada Citoyenneté et Immigration Canada Tr ai A capital campaign to bring new emergency and MRI services to the Grace. Please donate today tomorrowsgrace. ca The $ 6 million raised by this campaign will help build a spacious new addition that will house a state- of- the- art emergency department and MRI. Your gift to the Grace Helps Build Change 774- 4444 WWW. WINNIPEGDODGE. 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O B O OBO OBO OBO OBO OBO OBO OBO 2 B RAN D BRAND NEW NEW $ 18 , 995 * O R $ 99 B/ W * 2015 RAM 1500 B RAN D BRAND NEW NEW 0 FINANCING DOWN PAYMENTS FOR 3 MONTHS % www. greenactioncentre. ca Make less wet, stinky garbage COMPOST! FREE WORKSHOPS R EADING the newspapers lately, you’d get the impression the fate of the world, or at least the Trans Pacific Partnership Trade talks, hinges on whether Canada will surrender on supply management for dairy. Pundits cite the powerful dairy lobby as a major roadblock, particularly in an election year. Really? Even if you stuffed all of the country’s 12,000 dairy farmers into a few ridings and added in their family and friends, their clout is hardly enough to have politicians quaking in their seats. A more plausible reason for why successive federal governments have maintained support for supply management might be because the sector punches above its weight economically. An analysis by the Dairy Farmers of Canada shows the sector creates 215,000 jobs in Canada and contributes $ 18.9 billion to the economy. That puts it pretty much on par with the canola industry, in which the production of 43,000 farmers creates 249,000 jobs and contributes $ 19.3 billion to the GDP. It’s well above the pork sector, with 7,300 producers creating 45,000 jobs and contributing $ 3.5 billion. The countries that are most critical of Canada’s supply management are competitors that are hardly squeaky clean when it comes to support for dairy. “ Every single dairy sector and most egg sectors are supported in some fashion by the public sector, except Australia,” Bruce Muirhead, the University of Waterloo’s associate vice- president, external research told a Senate committee Tuesday. New Zealand doesn’t pay subsidies, but it set up a single- desk exporting agency for dairy. Australia’s sector is nonsubsidized and struggling. The U. S. offers producers heavily subsidized insurance. “ The genius of the Canadian system lies in part in the fact that its farmers are not subsidized by government, while still providing an essential agricultural commodity at a reasonable price for consumers,” Muirhead said. Farmers produce only for domestic consumption in exchange for protection from imports and guaranteed returns. He said the system is as “ rational and necessary” as when it was first implemented in the 1970s. “ Indeed, the case is more solid presently, given the global volatility in agricultural prices and the difficulties farmers outside the supply- managed sectors face in ensuring the sustainability of their operations.” Muirhead’s comments coincide with research that shows countries that rely on food imports are more vulnerable to supply and price shocks. “ Our Canadian system hits all the proper markers: food security, food sovereignty, traceability and proper pricing for consumers, with the result of smaller farms with less adverse environmental impact as well,” he said. The Canadian system balances the costs and rewards of a stable supply. True, the U. S. has singled out Canada’s protection of dairy as a major stumbling block to a successful negotiation. This, from a country that doesn’t yet have the negotiating authority it needs from Congress to even cut a deal — far from it. This, from a country that continues to ignore a string of international tribunal rulings saying its country- of- origin labelling rules on meat are protectionist and artificially restrict access to its market. If the system is opened up, “ we would be flooded with American milk and eggs,” Muirhead said. “ I think it would spell the end of the Canadian ( dairy) industry and the Canadian egg industry in a significant way.” But U. S. threats that Canada could find itself locked out of the TPP are enough to get the grain, oilseed and other livestock farmers in this country on board with a campaign urging negotiators to do whatever it takes to conform with the ‘ free’ trade agenda. The latest Canola Council of Canada release cites the potential for increasing canola exports by $ 780 million with a TPP deal. That doesn’t factor in the potential cost to a $ 525- million domestic market selling canola meal to the dairy sector. The point is, Canadian agriculture won’t get ahead by trading one sector off against another. Laura Rance is editor of the Manitoba Co- operator. She can be reached at: laura@ fbcpublishing. com Pitting one sector against another hurts everyone LAURA RANCE RURAL REVIVAL B_ 10_ May- 16- 15_ FP_ 01. indd B10 5/ 15/ 15 5: 44: 25 PM

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