Grain Farmers of Ontario, the province’s largest commodity organization, representing Ontario’s 28,000 barley, corn, oat, soybean and wheat farmers today urges the federal government to increase and widen their agriculture support quickly.
Today’s announcement of $252 million in funding directed to food processors, beef, pork, and dairy farmers is too targeted and leaves out too many groups that are suffering losses because of the COVID-19 pandemic, including Ontario gran farmers.
“Grain farmers in Ontario are facing an unprecedented $550 million in lost revenues. Over 67 percent of our farmer-members are worried about their farms’ ability to survive this crisis and its aftermath,” said Markus Haerle, Chair of Grain Farmers of Ontario. “The federal government has ‘targeted’ groups without understanding the full picture. Our Prime Minister and his government are asking grain farmers to bear the costs of everyone having enough to eat.”
Ontario grain farmers have recommended reasonable, realistic changes to the current slate of support programs for farms that will offer grain farmers the security to invest time and money into the farm businesses that lay the foundation for Canada’s food supply system.
Grain Farmers of Ontario recently completed a survey of its farmer-members and preliminary results showed that 90 percent of those surveyed expect their net income will be reduced in 2020 and more than half are worried that they will not even be able to cover their 2020 planting costs. Closures and staff reductions at processing facilities have decreased demand for grain dramatically.
Grain Farmers of Ontario is estimating losses to net income of $135 per acre for corn and $20 per acre to net income for soybeans based on current prices. Additionally, grain farmers could see $550 million in total revenue loss if there is not a rebound to pre covid-19 levels in Future Prices.
The survey was conducted the last week of April 2020 and results reported are preliminary.
GRAIN FARMERS OF ONTARIO
Grain Farmers of Ontario is the province’s largest commodity organization, representing Ontario’s 28,000 barley, corn, oat, soybean, and wheat farmers. The crops they grow cover over 6 million acres of farm land across the province, generate over $4.1 billion in production value, result in over $18 billion in economic output and are responsible for over 75,000 jobs in the province.