Woodlawn, ON – “Yesterday’s announcement that the reference margin limit has been retroactively removed from AgriStability is good news,” said National Farmers Union President, Katie Ward. “The NFU has always opposed the reference margin limit, not least because it would never help farmers who were working hard to reduce their farm’s GHG emissions by using agronomic practices that require fewer purchased inputs.” The AgriStability reference margin capped payouts at the cost of their eligible inputs.
“We encourage all provinces to return to the table to finish the deal,” added NFU 2nd Vice President, Stewart Wells. “The current 30% trigger means AgriStabilty only provides a safety net for farms involved in very high volatility sectors, or that are over-specialized and as result exposing themselves to higher risks. Reinstating a 15% margin loss trigger would make the program useful for more farmers, making AgriStability more equitable.”
“The provinces of Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba are standing in the way of needed improvements to the AgriStability safety net even though these provinces depend more on farmers to provide wealth for their economies,” noted Wells. “It would be a shame if they were to stand in the way of making AgriStability a better program that could help farmers all across Canada make it through tough times.”
The margin cap and the change in reference margin trigger were implemented with Growing Forward 2 in 2013, leading to a significant drop in the number of farmers enrolling. In recent years, fewer than 30% of farmers have participated in AgriStability.
For more information:
Katie Ward, NFU President: 613-797-0601
Stewart Wells, NFU Vice 2nd President: 306-773-6852