Saskatoon, Sask. – The National Farmers Union (NFU) is expressing its support for the Canadian Wheat Board’s (CWB) upcoming plebiscite among Western Canada’s wheat and barley farmers on the future of its single desk. “The NFU strongly encourages all wheat and barley farmers to participate in the CWB’s plebiscite. It is very important that the democratic rights of farmers are realized,” stated NFU President Terry Boehm.
On Tuesday CWB Board Chair, Allen Oberg, announced that the CWB would hold a plebiscite of its own among wheat and barley farmers. The CWB’s announcement was prompted by the huge outcry from farmers over the refusal of the federal Conservative government to hold a plebiscite, as required in Section 47.1 of the Canadian Wheat Board Act. “Democracy is at the very heart of Canadian citizenship. Farmers are outraged that their voting rights are being denied by the current government. They can’t deny farmers their right to vote,” said Boehm.
“The CWB belongs to Western wheat and barley farmers. Farmers pay for all of the operations of the Board – our Board is the largest wheat and barley marketer in the world – and Canada as a country sees a net benefit from the extra money that comes into it from grain sales. The CWB is good for farmers and it’s good for Canada. It’s unforgiveable that the government is refusing to follow the laws of Canada to trigger the plebiscite spelled out in the CWB Act. This is another cost that the government is downloading onto farmers,” concluded Boehm.