Ontario minister asks federal government to resolve trade issue, compensate meat producers


Ontario’s minister of agriculture is asking — again — that the federal government move on with resolving large-scale trade issues with China, and that the feds provide compensation for the meat sector in the meantime.

Following up on a request made in early July and post-federal-provincial-territorial (FPT) meeting of agriculture ministers at Quebec City, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs, Ernie Hardeman, is renewing the call for trade resolution, claiming the on-going trade disruption is costing Ontario’s hog and beef sector significant in lost revenue each week.

In a letter to the federal minister of agriculture Marie-Claude Bibeau dated August 6, 2019, Hardeman says that processors are “incurring losses on a weekly basis of up to $15-$30 per hog in lost revenues.”

The ag minister says the province “strongly encourages the federal government to work with the meat sector to provide compensation to ensure they remain viable until predictable trade is restored and assist them in securing new export markets.” He also urges the federal government to exercise its rights through the World Trade Organization in regards to canola, beef, and pork trade.

Hardeman urges progress to support the agri-food sector and that the federal government considers the short- and medium-term impacts of these trade disruptions so that both farmers and processors can plan with certainty and “know their governments have their backs.”

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