Monday, October 11, 2021

Boy, was I wrong!

I really blew it earlier last year when I repeatedly lamented the lack of Canadian subsidies for farmers.

I was complaining that Canada was failing to keep up with the United States where former President Donald Trump lavished billions in trade-compensation subsidies for farmers during his tariff escalations with China and then added more billions in COVID-19 relief.

It's hard to keep up with it all, but I think it amounted to more than $55 billion.

By comparison Canadians got an offer of $170 million extra for AgriStability, and even that did not come to realization because of Prairie resistance.

And now Statistics Canada has released revenue estimates for the first six months of this year, following its report that net farm income last year increased to $9.9 billion and that average farm family income was forecast to have increased by 8.6 per cent to just over $194,000.

Farm revenues surged by 12.4 per cent so far this year to a record $38.2 billion.

Ontario’s farm revenues increased less than the national total, but were $7.1 billion.

Higher prices for canola and wheat led the way.

So, boy, was I wrong! Our farmers did'nt need much of anything from taxpayers this year or last.

The revenue situation may look quite different for the final six months of the year because drought has severely reduced Prairie crops.

But Ontario may fare better because bumper corn and soybean crops are into harvest, fruit and vegetable prices and harvest have been good, beef and pork prices have trended higher and supply management commodities are enjoying a return to normal supply chains and increased demand.

But then there's still the issue of net farm income to consider. While revenues are trending up this year, so are expenses.

This time I think I'll just wait and see.