9, 2006: Last year’s bumper crop of major reports
on fixing Canadian agriculture are coming under close scrutiny by
the members and friends of the Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario.
CFFO’s 2006 seminar series will ask if the solutions proposed
by the four reports clash or converge. Combined, there is a lot
of advice in the four reports but are they offering solutions that
family farmers appreciate? The seminar series will focus on two
of the themes in the reports:
- The solutions to farmers’ lack of clout in the marketplace;
- The solutions proposed for the farm gate financial crisis.
CFFO has posted a summary of the solutions proposed by each of
the four reports on its website: www.christianfarmers.org. The four
- The Honourable Wayne Easter, Parliamentary Secretary to the
former Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food in the Liberal government
produced “Empowering Canadian Farmers in the Marketplace”
- The National Farmers Union wrote “The Farm Crisis: Its
Causes and Solutions,” also last July.
- The Agriculture Institute of Canada commissioned a discussion
paper, “Big Farms, Small Farms: Strategies in Sustainable
Agriculture to fit All Sizes,” last September.
- The Canadian Federation of Agriculture wrote “Agricultural
Policy Framework II: A Canadian Farm Bill” last November.
The variety of proposed solutions is quite dramatic. Proposals
for fixing the farm gate financial crisis include the following:
- Enhance returns from the marketplace by organizing international
meetings of farm ministers and consulting farmers.
- Create distinct agricultural programs for small and large farms.
- Give smaller farmers preferential access to processors.
- Pay short-term incentives to farmers who idle land to better
match supply to demand for grain
- Invest in alternative uses for agricultural land, like biomass
for fuel production.
- Give farmers incentives for marketing livestock at lower weights.
- Make safety nets and risk management programs affordable, predictable,
responsiveness and equitable across the country.
- Guarantee that at least 95% of farmers recover their full costs
- Put a consumer levy on food to fund the adoption of sustainable
- Target farm aid programs to small- and medium-scale producers.
- Identify costs, such as inspection fees, that governments can
pay for entirely.
- When farmers are required to take steps, like traceability,
for the benefit of the public good, the public should pay.
- Implement a payment system for environmental goods and services.
- Expand agricultural production into processing and distribution.
- Encourage young farmers with incentives.
Which of these solutions will contribute the most to solving the
farm gate financial crisis? That will be the underlying question
of the CFFO seminar series.
Six sessions, starting March 8, are planned. Visit the CFFO website
for details or call for the schedule: 519-837-1620. Join us as we
explore the strengths and weaknesses of these solutions and identify
For a complete list of events and summaries of the reports, please
To register send email to email@example.com
or call 519-837-1620. There is a registration fee to cover the cost
of lunch and refreshments.