The federal government has earmarked nearly $4 billion in compensation in its next budget for those involved in the supply-managed sector. Now, dairy, chicken, and turkey groups are waiting for the specific details on how the money will be doled out.
“What I see here in the budget is something that, where the government is actually coming forward with their commitment to try to compensate for the losses that we have experienced in the two trade deals (CPTPP and CETA),” says David Wiens, vice president of the Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC). “Of course the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) trade deal has not been ratified yet so this does not reflect those numbers.”
In total, the supply-managed sectors will see $3.9 billion in compensation, with up to $2.4 billion available to supply-managed farms affected by market impacts of the deals. However, of that amount, $250 million has already been provided to producers, meaning a net amount of up to $2.15 billion will be available in coming years to deal with income losses associated with the trade agreements.
Wiens says they’re happy about the support but they remain curious as what each sector — dairy, egg, poultry —will get in the end. That’s something Yves Ruel, assistant executive director for the Chicken Farmers of Canada, echoed.
“We are pleased the government clearly realized there’s a significant impact on our sectors from the the agreements,” Ruel says, adding they’re still waiting on important details.
Meanwhile, the Egg Farmers of Canada say this is nothing new and in fact was the “same as the commitments that were announced following the initial 2015 Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement and does not include measures to address the impact of CUSMA.”
Both egg and poultry groups say they’re eager to continue talks with officials through the poultry working group. All three groups agreed that more time and analysis is needed before they can make a definitive answer if this compensation will be enough in the long run.
Listen below to the full audio interview between RealAgriculture’s Jessika Guse and the DFC’s David Wiens.