Letter: NDP opposed to provincial moves on Wheat Board

Dear Editor:

Since the beginnings of this province, Alberta’s family farmers have found security and prosperity through working together, not against each other. It’s a heritage and culture of co-operation that all Albertans can admire and learn from.

Family farmers today take on staggering debt to keep up with the big equipment and material buying power of corporate farms.

Yet Alberta’s PCs think it’s okay to make competing against corporate farms even tougher for family farmers by supporting a federal move to cut the Canadian Wheat Board’s single-desk selling system.

Tories like to talk about choice, but the choice is clear. The CWB wins hundreds of millions of dollars in extra income for farmers by flexing Canada’s prairie muscle abroad. Without the single desk, large corporate farms can undercut family farmers by selling more grain at a lower price – protecting their profits but undercutting the price of grain for small farmers.

Australia’s Wheat Board lost the single desk in 2008. As a result, Australian wheat farmers are losing $2 billion dollars per year, according to the New South Wales Farmers Association.

Farmers have exercised their choice – they’ve voted for pro-CWB board representatives time and time again.

While Alberta’s PCs endorse cuts to the wheat board that would crush family farms, Alberta’s NDP supports the sustainability of family farms by supporting the single-desk selling system of the Canadian Wheat Board. This is about economics, but it’s also about doing what’s needed to make sure family farms aren’t relegated to the history books.

Brian Mason
Leader, Alberta’s NDP Opposition

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2 Comments

  1. Well said. Unfortunately, you’re screwed, because Harper & Ritz and your own provincial government don’t care. They believe that the only way to national prosperity is for corporations to control everything and also get all the tax breaks. Hopefully you have oil under your land, because you’re not going to be getting as much for what’s on top of it.

  2. It’s also about choice. Farmers should be able to choose and not be told what’s best for them. Duh!!

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