Assurance programs are imperative to successful crop production.
GUELPH, ON (April 17, 2020) – 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 Canadian government to take immediate action to ensure the food supply system is secure by providing assurance to the farm businesses that drive one of Canada’s largest industries.
Ontario grain farmers are heading into the 2020 plant season and are deciding how much, and which, grains to plant. Given the uncertainty in global markets, the drop in demand for the current grain supply – through ethanol plant closures, livestock production declines, and more, and the lingering impacts of the last two harvests, grain farmers cannot bear the burden of risk again this year.
“At current prices, in many cases our farmer-members will not even break even once they sell their grain. What other industry is asked to invest in this type of uncertain future? None. Our farmer-members must supply the food system with grain that will be used for food, feed for animals, and more, but with no assurance from the government that these investments will not ruin them,” said Markus Haerle, Chair, Grain Farmers of Ontario.
The grains and oilseeds that will be planted this year by grain farmers in Ontario are an essential part of Canada’s domestic food supply and economy – accounting for more than 75,000 jobs and $18 billion for the country’s economy. Grain farmers in Ontario grow more than 15 million tons of grain for Canada and the world each year.
“We need the government to share in the risk that farmers are going to take this year to produce food. Our farmers are ready, and want, to plant the food that Canada needs,” Haerle continued.
Grain Farmers of Ontario has proposed a solution to government that can be acted on immediately. The mechanisms are in place to roll out the programs that farmers need to ensure our food system security for today and the future.