NFU Briefs 2005

  • December 9, 2005:

    Comments on the Saskatchewan Meat Inspection Review

    NFU offers recommendations to the provincial government on meat inspection. We understand that current legislation and regulations governing production, processing and sale of livestock vary considerably from province to province. But there is a basic principle that we believe must be the foundation for regulations across Canada. That principle is that meat inspection standards should be implemented solely in the public interest for the purpose of protecting public health. Meat inspection standards should not be used as a vehicle to facilitate further corporate concentration of processing and slaughter facilities in fewer and larger hands.

  • November 30, 2005:

    The Farm Crisis & Corporate Profits

    The farm income crisis has reached excruciating intensity. For Canadian farm families and their net incomes, 2004 was the second-worst year in history. But for agribusiness, 2004 was the best year in history. Is there a link? This report uses 2004 as a case study and takes a detailed look at the profitability of the dominant agribusiness corporations. This report follows the money.

  • November 25, 2005:

    Submission to the Canadian Grain Commission On the subject of designating Canaryseed As a grain under the Canada Grain Act

    Canaryseed should be designated a grain under the Canada Grain Act.

    The National Farmers Union strongly supports the initiative to designate canaryseed as a grain under the Canada Grain Act, and to regulate it under the terms of the regulations contained in that legislation.

    The NFU Policy Statement specifically states: "Canary seed should be included by the Canadian Grain Commission as a grain under the Canada Grain Act."1

  • September 14, 2005:

    GM Crops: Not Needed on the Island

    Over the past decade, corporate and government managers have spent millions trying to convince farmers and other citizens of the benefits of genetically-modified (GM) crops. But this huge public relations effort has failed to obscure the truth: GM crops do not deliver the promised benefits; they create numerous problems, costs, and risks; and Canadian consumers and foreign customers alike do not want these crops.

  • September 12, 2005:

    Submission to the Canadian Grain Commission on the subject of enforcement of licensing provisions of the Canada Grain Act

    As outlined in the Canadian Grain Commission letter of May 13, 2005, the CGC policy is as follows:

    "Simply stated, effective August 1, 2006, grain companies dealing in or handling western grain will either be licensed by the CGC, or lawfully exempted from licensing, or subject to criminal prosecution."

    The NFU strongly endorses this initiative, which we believe is long overdue. Western Canadian farmers have been calling on the CGC to enforce the provisions of the Canada Grain Act for a number of years.

  • August 17, 2005:

    National Farmers Union Presentation to the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) Electoral Review Panel

    The NFU has long been a strong supporter of the Canadian Wheat Board and other single-desk marketing agencies which operate on behalf of, and in the interests of, farmers.

    The short notice for the timing of the electoral review panel’s hearings unfortunately leaves many farmers unable to participate. The harvest is getting into full swing just as the panel is holding hearings across the prairies, and it is difficult for farmers to leave their combines and swathers to attend the three meetings scheduled for mid-August. The tight time frame set out by the federal government also leaves little time for farmers to respond in writing by the September 30 deadline. The hearings should be conducted at more than a single centre in each province, and be structured to allow for maximum participation.

  • July 5, 2005:

    The Farm Crisis: Its Causes and Solutions

    This report is based on two briefs that the NFU submitted to Parliamentary Secretary Wayne Easter’s consultations on farm income. The first brief, submitted January 20, 2005 is entitled Solving the Farm Crisis: A Sixteen-Point Plan for Canadian Farm and Food Security. The second brief, submitted June 7, 2005 is entitled Understanding the Farm Crisis. These two pieces, brought together here in this report, lay out both the causes of the farm income crisis and a set of affordable solutions.

  • June 23, 2005:

    Submission to the Federal Competition Bureau regarding the proposed takeover of Better Beef Ltd. by Cargill

    The National Farmers Union strongly recommends that the Competition Bureau block the proposed takeover of Better Beef by Cargill.

  • April 5, 2005:

    Submission by the National Farmers Union to the House of Commons Standing Committee on Agriculture and Agri-Food

    The NFU recommends that Bill C-27 be rejected, and that the Government of Canada retain independence with respect to establishing food safety standards and trade protocols.

  • March 8, 2005:

    Report and recommendations of the National Farmers Union to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency on its Consultations on proposed amendments to the Plant Breeders' Rights Act to bring existing legislation into conformity with the 1991 UPOV Convention

    The National Farmers Union looks forward to fruitful, multi-party consultations with the federal government and CFIA on ways to best fund Canada’s plant variety development systems and ways to best restore prosperity to the families that produce Canada’s food. And the NFU looks forward to the termination of active consideration of UPOV ’91 as an appropriate model for funding Canada’s plant variety development systems. UPOV ’91 is a damaging failure and Canada must never adopt it.

  • February 21, 2005:

    Submission by the National Farmers Union Region 6 (Saskatchewan) On Selected Rural and Agricultural Issues to the Government of Saskatchewan

    In Saskatchewan, our members have been raising crops and livestock for years. Through thick and thin, through times of brief prosperity as well as times of low prices and bad weather, farmers have continued to provide the backbone of Saskatchewan’s economy. This is one of the richest agricultural regions of the country, but the wealth that is produced in rural communities is siphoned off, through unequal market relations, to the benefit of others.

  • February 7, 2005:

    Public Consultations on Conserving Our Water: A Water Conservation Plan for Saskatchewan

    Water conservation is not a new issue for residents of rural Saskatchewan. Farm families know all too well that good quality, abundant, clean water is not something to be taken for granted. In many parts of this province, scarcity of good water has been a recurring problem because of the heavy reliance on unreliable and intermittent surface sources and lower-quality groundwater sources such as deep aquifers.

  • January 20, 2005:

    Solving the Farm Crisis: A Sixteen-Point Plan for Canadian Farm and Food Security

    …The preceding list of Programs is long and detailed and, even at that, not exhaustive. But at the core of most of these programs are two key ideas: farmers must cease trying to maximize production and exports (they must abandon systems that maximize input and technology and capital use); and governments must work with farmers to rebalance market power between our family farms and the agribusiness transnationals that control the other links of the agri-food chain. If we accomplish these goals, farmers will enjoy dramatically-increased net incomes and Canada will enjoy prosperous rural areas and improved and more sustainable economic performance.