Lawrence MacAulay’s June 15 photo opportunity in Prince Edward Island with U.S. agriculture secretary Sonny Perdue has been in the planning for weeks. But it couldn’t have been better timed after the fractious G7 meetings in Charlevoix, Quebec where President Trump cast autos and agriculture as two obstacles in NAFTA negotiations.
The Canadian Federation of Agriculture and its mirror group in the U.S., the National Farmers Union issued a joint statement on June 11 urging officials to preserve the strong, longstanding trade relationship between the two countries.
"No heated rhetoric nor inflammatory remark could possibly represent the positive sentiment that American and Canadian farmers share for each other's nation. We urge our respective officials to engage in positive discourse that protects the strong trade ties that benefit American and Canadian farmers alike.
On June 12, Colin Robertson, opinion columnist for the Globe and Mail, wrote: “Canada and like-minded countries need to stick together, act in tandem and push back against Trumpist protectionism. It means taking it to him where it hurts and targeting his base: in particular, the farm community.”
Seeking not to politicize the day-long tour in Prince Edward Island, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada did not issue a news release.