Chicken’s supply-managed system surprises most Ontario consumers

© AgMedia Inc.


No where does it say how many farmers don't own the birds or the quota and how many feed mills do own the birds and the quota . Public was given a false sense of supporting what they think are family farms when infact many will be nothing more than hired hands like many pork farms who custom feed pigs on their property .

The survey should have asked consumers how they want their chicken produced and if they had any idea how many chickens the average Ontario farmer grows annually under supply management.
this would have told us where consumers think their is chicken is from and how its produced.

Sean McGivern

Most people who live in the cities know little if anything about Supply Management . Most are shocked too hear that quota too milk 200 cows can run $5-6 mil. and you still need the farm,barn,ect. SM is really a great system , like an auto union for farmers and has worked very well for consumers also. We should not try and pull SM farms down too our level because they have been doing well. Looking at it as sustainable there does need to be something done as far as quota values , as those dollars tied up in quota benefits neither the farmer or the consumer ,maybe quota holders could be restricted too not selling there quota for any more money than what it was purchsaed for or sold back too marketing board at original cost and then resold or tendered out. If you live in a highly populated SM area it is tough too compete against them for land,ect. but every area in Ontario now days has either rich businessmen or old family money too compete with. The US system of open markets has pretty much eliminated family feather business and you have too milk 500 too whatever number of cows too survive . SM has some real challeges ahead of it. kg kimball

" We should not try and pull SM farms down too our level" That comment has been said for decades . So, how do you propose to level the playing field for those in non supply managed farm commodities? If every farm commodity had a cost of production guarantee would that not increase the guaranteed COP for current supply management resulting in a price increase of milk, eggs, chicken, turkey etc.?

If every commodity had cost-of-production pricing, there would have to be 200% tariff barriers on everything, and that will never happen - and if it ever did, since land costs are part of any cost-of-production model, the price of land would be driven to even crazier heights than it is now, thereby making any universal cost-of-production formula self-defeating.

Rather than focusing on "up" or "down", people should embrace the economic truth that the entire economy benefits when protectionist privileges are taken away from the favoured few.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

50 years of Supply Management and you will have to tell me what year there weren't challenges?
This survey is no different than any done in the dairy Industry,an overwhelming support of the current system.

The only support supply management has ever had comes from:

(1) quota-owners themselves
(2) farm organizations and politicians who pander to protectionist fallacies.

Consumer organizations have never supported supply management, younger, non-supply managed farmers certainly don't support it now, cross-border shoppers definitely don't support it, Ontario Pork, by virtue of it's 68-13 vote at its 2013 annual general meeting to "urge government to place trade ahead of protectionism" absolutely doesn't support it and, of course, anyone who's ever taken even the most-basic course in economics doesn't and ethically can not support it.

And, I mean, really, when an editorial in the March 5, 2015 edition of the National Post noted -

- "as of 2009, the average Canadian household income was approximately $68,000, compared to $110,000 for dairy producing households and $119,000 for poultry- and egg-producing households"

how could anyone not see that supply management robs from the poor to give to the rich?

Furthermore, how long can quota owners continue to fantasize about having "overwhelming support" when even the National Post noted in the above-mentioned editorial that supply management:

(A) is an organized price-fixing ring
(B) drives up the price of basic foods
(C) drives up the price of basic foods in a way calculated to offend our trading partners
(D) is a blot on the policy landscape
(E) has to go

What's worse is that supply managed farmers are ignoring the reality that their numbers have dwindled to the point where no federal riding has more than 300 quota owners (again according to the National Post) meaning that in every riding, there could easily be more people who want to see (and would benefit from) the disappearance of supply management than who want to see it kept.

However, as always, the biggest "blind spot" of dairy and poultry farmers is that they continue to ignore the extent to which, even in the farm community, supply management is not well-liked and will not be missed.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

You keep your Pork vote and your National Post articles,as a 3rd generation Supply Management farmer l would take a positive and supportive consumer survey over those 2 of yours any day of the week!

If fact, i'd be very interested in a Pork survey at this time,it would be interesting to hear how consumers like the 15-25% raise in Pork prices the past year.

The easiest way to ensure "deer-in-the-headlights" failure in any business is to assume/believe without question, as does the above poster, that past success is a reliable indicator of future performance.

With all of the fundamental forces stacked against it, supply management is, to an ever-increasing extent, not just a house-of-cards, but a triumph of faith over reason.

The above poster's lack of concern for anyone but quota holders demonstrates exactly why, even in the farm community, supply management is not well-liked and will not be missed, especially by the 68 "aye" votes to "urge government to place trade ahead of protectionism" at Ontario Pork's 2013 annual general meeting.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

Most consumers don't know about supply management. That is true. But the ones who know tend to be engaged food citizens, interested in purchasing local, sustainable and organic foods. These are growing markets that help farmers capture more of the retail price. This segment of the population should not be ignored.

If these participants had been asked if they minded paying the subsidy (via tariff), to contribute to the quota millionaires club, would they have "reacted positively"?
If these participants had been told that anyone who attempts to raise more than 300 birds per year without quota could be faced with fines, would they have "reacted positively"?

When only 3% know what supply management for chicken even is, as stated in the above article, any responses born therein are after having words put in their mouths.

Raube Beuerman

Please inform us all as to how much subsidy consumers pay on chicken ?? Exactly what portion of their taxes goes to support chicken farmers ?

Supply managed farmers continually boast that they get no subsidies and in the narrowest possble sense they're right because they don't get taxpayer subsidies but they do receive a regressive subsidy from consumers measured in the form of what is now known as a "producer support estimate" (formerly producer subsidy equivalent).

One practical way to guage the subsidy supply managed farmers receive from consumers is the value of quota itself which is, by definition, the net-present value of the "subsidy" they expect to extract from consumers - that, in Canada, has been estimated, by various sources, to be anywhere up to $35 billion, and could be higher except for the disguising of dairy quota prices in Ontario because of the way quota price caps are being circumvented by whole farm transfers.

When one googles "Producer support estimate", various sources of data and definitions become available to assist in understanding what the term means and how it is measured, by various sources, particularly the OECD.

Therefore, I would invite the above anonymous poster to inform himself/herself - the information is all there.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

Editor's note: The author should sign the comment and resubmit.

In April of 2010, the C.D. Howe Institute published a report about supply management (google "calculating the aggregate value of quota" and scroll down) and referred to the Statistics Canada Canadian Financial Farm Data Base which shows that, in 2008, the aggregate value of agricultural quota in Canada was $28.2 billion (see table 1 in the C.D. Howe report).

If anything, the aggregate value of quota hasn't gone down since then, thereby making $35 billion in today's dollars a relatively-conservative estimate.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

You mean to tell us that there was a survey done and they did not contact RB , ST,GB & SM . How dare they ! Shame on them ! I thought speed dial was created for that purpose only !

Since when does SM get subsidies ? What are you talking about ?

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