GUELPH, ON (August 27, 2015) – Grain farmers in Simcoe North are seeking an agriculture champion in their next MPP, where a by-election will be held on September 3, 2015.
“Following Grain Farmers of Ontario’s difficult experience working with the current government on the restrictive neonicotinoid regulations that were imposed in early June, grain farmers need strong voices representing them, now more than ever,” says Mark Brock, Chair of Grain Farmers of Ontario.
“It is extremely important that the MPPs representing rural ridings are prepared to stand up for rural Ontario and the vibrant agricultural communities across the countryside,” says Brock.
Brock recently sent a letter to MPP candidates in Simcoe North to describe the challenges that Grain Farmers of Ontario faced relating to the treated seeds regulation that Environment Minister Glen Murray rushed through this spring, and to ask candidates to respond to the following question:
Will you, as the Member of Provincial Parliament for Simcoe North support a science-based approach and advocate for grain farmers in Ontario being able to access appropriate tools to manage their crops?
The timing of the province’s regulation has created a considerable amount of uncertainty for grain farmers and is expected cut corn and soybean farmer revenues by up to $600 million dollars across the province. The regulations will be challenged in court on September 28, 2015.
“Simcoe County has a diverse economy that includes a strong agricultural presence. It is our hope that those running to represent Simcoe North will commit to stand up for farmers in the county, particularly when in Toronto where agriculture seems to be under attack daily during the legislative session,” Brock added.
Grain Farmers of Ontario has asked MPP candidates to share their responses with the organization by August 31, 2015, following which Grain Farmers of Ontario will publicize the responses and share them with farmer-members in Simcoe North.
|Grain Farmers of Ontario Chair Mark Brock sent this letter to MPP candidates in the Simcoe North riding. You can read the letter, as well as the candidates' responses, here.
|Letter from Grain Farmers of Ontario Chair Mark Brock to Patrick Brown, PC Candidate
|Response from Patrick Brown, PC Candidate
|Letter from Grain Farmers of Ontario Chair Mark Brock to Fred Larsen, Liberal Candidate
|Response from Fred Larsen, Liberal Candidate
|Letter from Grain Farmers of Ontario Chair Mark Brock to Elizabeth Van Houtte, NDP Candidate
|Response from Elizabeth Van Houtte, NDP Candidate
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 6 million acres of farm land across the province, generate over $2.5 billion in farm gate receipts, result in over $9 billion in economic output and are responsible for over 40,000 jobs in the province.