The AgGrowth Coalition is disappointed with the lack of immediate action on requests to the Federal-Provincial-Territorial (FPT) agriculture ministers that would provide support to farmers from the impact of escalating global trade volatility.
While the need for improvements to AgriStability was acknowledged by the FPT agriculture ministers in their July 19th communiqué, there were no details as to how, or when, improvements would be made to address the challenges currently being faced by farmers across Canada as a result of global trade disruptions. In particular, there is great angst created by the China/U.S. trade war.
“The lack of immediate action from governments in support of farmers leaves Canadian farmers with nothing to rely on to manage global trade risks outside of our control,” said Markus Haerle, chair of the AgGrowth Coalition. “Our coalition will continue to push political leaders across Canada to provide necessary support for farmers to grow our businesses and weather these volatile times.”
“Farmers are counting on their agriculture ministers to create Business Risk Management (BRM) programming that will work for them in this time of unprecedented uncertainty,” said Chris van de Heuvel, AgGrowth co-chair. “Canada’s agriculture ginisters need to implement immediate reforms to BRM programming. This investment in the future of Canadian agriculture, a key economic sector, will ensure farmers have access to the support they need.”
The AgGrowth Coalition has set out a four-point plan for action that would ensure meaningful support is available for farmers and the coalition reiterates the urgent need to see this plan adopted by Canada’s agriculture ministers that includes:
- · AgriStability coverage immediately adjusted to cover losses starting at 85 per cent of historical reference margins with no Reference Margin Limits;
- · Prioritize discussions on production insurance for livestock and horticulture crops which are not currently covered under AgriInsurance;
- · Discussions on BRM programming options to be meaningful and focussed on program effectiveness rather than funding levels; and
- · The establishment of an industry-government technical working group that allows farm groups to actively participate in BRM data and impact analysis.
Coalition members represent farmers from across the country and include: Canadian Canola Growers Association, Canadian Federation of Agriculture, the Canadian Horticultural Council, Grain Farmers of Ontario, Grain Growers of Canada, and the National Sheep Network.
Source: AgGrowth Coalition July 22, 2019 news release