Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Grain farmers want help, not more talk

Markus Haerle, president of Grain Farmers of Ontario, lit a fire under Ontario Agriculture Minister Ernie Hardeman, pressuring him to speak up for immediate help for farmers hit by trade issues.

His comments came as federal, provincial and territorial agriculture ministers are meeting and seemed tardy in addressing the needs of grain farmers.

 “Farmers need meaningful support immediately not minor tweaks and more reviews,” Haerle said in a news release.

Farmers in the United States have already received $28 billion in subsidies to offset trade issues with China.

Canadian politicians have been saying the AgriStability program is designed to meet these kinds of needs, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, in his mandate letter to Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau, mentioned updates to AgriStability and changes that would speed the flow of funds when trade issues arise.