GUELPH, ON (June 11, 2020) – Grain Farmers of Ontario, the province’s largest commodity organization, representing Ontario’s 28,000 barley, corn, oat, soybean and wheat farmers,today responds to questions about the federal government’s carbon tax paid by grain farmers to dry grain.
“The numbers are indisputable. The rates for the carbon tax are enshrined in regulation, and the government can access these rates as well as the amount of fuel required to dry a kernel of corn. It is simple math. We have run the numbers and the cost averaged to $5.50 per acre on corn, which means that on a 1000 acre farm the carbon tax bill would be more than $5000,” said Markus Haerle, Chair, Grain Farmers of Ontario. “That is really just the tip of the iceberg. We estimate that the cost of the carbon tax is $14 per acre if you take into account transportation, inputs, and more.”
In April, the carbon tax increased and it will at least double in the next two years. Grain farmers need to dry grains to make them viable, especially if the province has another wet season.
“We dry grains to avoid spoiling food. You can’t make bread from spoiled grain. In Ontario grain drying is often a necessary part of producing high quality, healthy, viable grains,” Haerle continued. “Every farmer is unique, every farmer has a different rotation of crops on varying numbers of acres, but no farmer can afford an increasing tax on producing food.”
The Carbon Tax is an unnecessary tax that costs farmers. Grain farmers from across Ontario are concerned about how they are going to pay the carbon tax on their already expensive drying costs. Burdening grain farms with this tax means that farmers cannot invest in technologies that can combat climate change.
The increase in the carbon tax is one more thing that grain farmers cannot afford as they face competition from the US farmer who has received support. Grain Farmers of Ontario has asked the government of Canada to improve business risk management coverage to help Ontario farmers get through the impacts of COVID.