Grain Farmers of Ontario Pleased to See Resolution to CN Rail Strike

Guelph, ON (November 26, 2019) – Grain Farmers of Ontario, the province‘s largest commodity organization, representing Ontario‘s 28,000 barley, corn, oat, soybean, and wheat farmers today offers congratulations to Canadian National Railway Co and the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference on the resolution of the longest train strike in a decade.

The week-long strike quickly had a large, negative impact on grain farming in Ontario, and across Canada, as much-needed propane was no longer being shipped by rail and had to be rationed at a time when farmers needed it more than ever to dry wet grain.

“We are extremely pleased to see this strike come to an end and we hope for very quick ratification for all parties. Ontario‘s grain farmers were already dealing with a highly stressful harvest season that was too wet and too cold. Many of our farmer-members desperately need propane to fuel grain dryers. We cannot sell wet corn and our crops were at real risk,” said Markus Haerle, Chair, Grain Farmers of Ontario. “Farmers who had to find alternate drying means have suffered added costs and those that left corn in the field are dealing with deteriorating quality of their crop. We are hopeful that propane shipping will be seen as a high priority for everyone involved as the backlog of shipments is dealt with.”

Grain Farmers of Ontario expects the backlog to take some time to sort out before propane and other necessary items are moving at normal delivery cadence.

“It is very clear that rail is an essential service for this country. We expect the government will treat it as such in the near future,” continued Haerle.

Grain farmers in Ontario produce the majority of the country‘s corn and soybeans, which are used domestically and internationally in food production, bio-fuel production and alcohol. Ontario grain farming currently provides $18 billion in economic input to the province.


Contact:
Victoria Berry, Manager, Communications – 226 820-6641; vberry@gfo.ca
Markus Haerle, Chair – 613 229-8336; marhaerle@gmail.com