Small flock operator plans suit against chicken industry groups

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Good for Mr. Black! It's about time someone addressed this issue.
It's sad that CFO can't be trusted to police themselves...alas, human nature is such that greed seems to be the determining factor.

One must question the freedom of choice for Canadians when we are not able to buy food from a farmer who is willing to produce it at a lesser price, then would face prosecution. Raube Beuerman, Dublin ON

Given the choice, Canadians will choose the safest and cheapest foods available to them. In Canada, that option is in the grocery store, it is fallacious to believe that your small local farmer can maintain a production that follows the same health and safety regulations as the larger scale operations at a lower price. While I am fully supportive of small flock farmers, I can not ignore economies of scale, it is important to remember that the prices of such products will be much greater than the ones in the grocery stores.

I am talking large scale farms. Large scale farms are not permitted to operate in Canada without quota that could produce much more affordable food. Why should Canadians have to pick up the tab for the paper value of quota? Raube Beuerman

You seem to forget that quota has a purpose, it prevents over-production. Sure, we could have many more chicken farmers producing at a lower cost in the short-run but the majority would be driven out of business in the long-run. Large vertically integrated companies from south of the border would not take long to take over these farms and run things their way. I can't speak for other Canadians but I don't mind paying a bit more money to ensure that I am eating quality chicken raised in Canada by our own farmers. Just ask around and I'm sure you will find that many more share this opinion with me...

Your argument is 40 years out of date, and was flawed even then.

We`ve abandoned single desk selling in pork, wheat, and white beans because it didn`t work any more. We have effectively prevented over-production in the white bean industry by the use of contracts, and exactly the same thing would happen with dairy and poultry. We`re not shipping milk in cans any more, but the average dairy farmer still seems to think we are locked in 1966.

In addition, your argument about food safety is nonsense because there`s no difference between allowing companies like Beatrice to import orange juice from goodness knows where, and sell it safely on grocery stores, and allowing them to do the same thing with dairy products.

And, with almost no respect, I suggest the multitudes of Canadians who regularly go to the US to buy poultry, would vastly out-number any number of so-called ``quality Canadian chicken`` adherents you might be able to assemble, especially when, in restaurants, I defy anyone to be able to tell whether their chicken wings came from Canada, or from Brazil.

But, you are right to claim quota has a purpose - and that`s to make consumers poor, and to allow dairy and poultry farmers to be financial bullies in the farm community.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

For the last few years you have repeated the same thing over and over. If you truly are as smart as you think, why don't you step up to the plate with MR Black and launch your own lawsuit against the DFO and CFO. It is time to do something or get off the pot. I am sick of hearing the same thing over and over again. Don't use the to old excuse. And no I am not a SM farmer.

I am giving Mr. Black, Mr. Beuerman, Mr. McGivern, and all of the other farmers who detest supply management, but who, through no fault of their own, do not have substantial enough of an education in economics to be able to express their thoughts, and beliefs, in a format consistent with basic economic principles, the ammunition, the fortitude, and the basic economic tenets, to carry on with the cause.

I am fortunate to have had many, many, private e-mails, phone calls, and personal visits, from farmers of all ages, who agree with me completely, and then some. I know I am on the right side of the issue, while supply managed farmers have their heads firmly in the sand.

The more I, and increasingly others, ridicule supply management, and point out the many, many, double standards which keep it alive, the sooner we will be able to get rid of it, and allow all Canadian farmers to be in it together, but which now, is nothing but a cruel joke on those of us who are not protected by 200% tariff barriers.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

Unsigned comment deleted

Santa gets tons and tons of mail every year also. He tells the children he sees them when they are sleeping and he flies from house to house by sleight pulled by flying reindeer. Do flying reindeer exist? The only real way to prove it is to push every reindeer on this planet off a huge cliff. If any fly, you have proof. Just because so many repeat the story and support it with letters, doesn't mean its reality. Just because you say you have many many private e-mails, calls and visits doesn't make your theory of supply economics reality. You need to back up your statements with verifiable facts.

All you need to do is sign your name, and see who responds - I do, and I get responses, lots of them, and it consistently averages about 10:1 in favour of getting rid of supply management, and the sooner, the better.

Anonymous and dismissive supply management supporters can jeer all they want - all they do is stiffen the resolve of those who want to level the playing field in our farm community by getting rid of supply management.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

While you say you are doing something and it is working, most people do not see these results. Mr. Black and Mr. McGivern are working to make a difference. Whether I agree with them or not does not matter. They have earned my respect for making an effort. Sitting on the sidelines holding Mr. Beuerman hand and complaining together does not equal results.

Going up against quasi-government orgs with deep pockets, based on laws that enable and protect them, to fight for a freedom that should be self evident is just nonsensical misdirection.

Let the market decide with clearly labeled food, and a system to objectively evaluate quality & safety. The gov has utterly failed and will continue to fail the public. The net and consistent outcomes are groups that wins at the expense of others.

Some quick research -
DFO - seems to owe its existence to support of gov force - Milk Act (1965) and a load of have to cringe at the History section, to paraphrase - we needed to get "organized" so we went to the government to change the rules of the game. Apparently the dairy world was in "chaos" before these brave bureaucrats sprang into action.
CFO - again appears to be in existence by yet more government decrees, oddly enough same year 1965 / OFPMC - central planners for what & who's good?

If this is NOT government intrusion for the benefit of a few please school me on the correct interpretation, thanks.

I guess the couple of non SM farmers that bitch about them all the time likely wish they had a couple of thousand acres more so they can over power their next door farm into selling more to them at a greatly lower price. Freedom to buy at a low price .

Freedom to buy at a free market price

Over production is prevented by contracts and you want dairy and poultry to go down that road. Contracts are another form of supply management at the whim of processors. Contracts are another form of quota. Your suggestion just changes the the faces of the people who will control supply management. We will just go back to the 1970's where this all started.

You just ruined your whole argument against Supply Management by your chicken wings from Brazil reference and its probably why this Country's imports of Beef and Pork have more than doubled in the last decade as well. Simply because in a free-market system we can't compete with a country like Brazil, which is the largest exporter of chicken in the world.We don't have the cheap feed,tropic climate,land resources or a young aspirational workforce which is all too willing to work with a minimum wage of around 2-3 dollars/hr.

If we are going to compete with a country like Brazil on the world chicken market then we would have to lower our cost of production to theirs,our economic standards to theirs and l don't see that happening.

Outside of Supply Management we have become a "Niche" Nation but there will always be the people out there that think we can be a world player, they are dreaming.

Why should Canadian consumers not be able to enjoy Brazilian chicken wings, especially if they cost a lot less money than the ones produced in Canada?

The basic economic principle you want to deny is the "principle of comparative advantage" which dictates that production will gravitate to those areas which have comparative advantages to others - let's face it, with heated barns, and a northern climate, we are at a disadvantage to a lot of countries when it comes to producing chicken, and there's no reason Canadian consumers should be forced to pay 200% tariff barrier pricing simply because our chicken farmers want to continue to ignore the reality of our climate.

Or to look at it another way, if our grains farmers can compete with Brazil, and we do, there's no reason why our chicken farmers can't stop whining and do the same thing.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

Ah yes, but you forgot that heat for barns can be used to feather your chicken COP and hence price received. The same is happening with Pork and Beef RMP COP numbers.

Did you just say 2 years of farming apprenticeship ? Let me guess,you were a University Professor 3 years ago!

Heaven help us!

" prevents over-production" ? Eco 101 - supply & demand, without government meddling the "best" (as determined by the consumer) product wins, demand drives others to supply it, all assuming there is a level playing field (again, no government meddling choosing winners and losers, handing out favors). Why is there such a demand for true free range eggs these days? These consumers seem willing to pay more for real food, you leave quality out of the equation completely. I would also wager that the aware consumer, looking for a quality product fully endorses buying local and Canadian also, the US mega-corp boogie man in the "real food" space is not true (only gov protection/regs/propaganda makes that even a possibility). We have been hoodwinked in to believing "an egg is an egg" regardless of where it came from, or what environment the chicken was in.

The tyranny, oppression and micro-management of processors were the reasons why the government brought in legislated supply management. Having farmers beg for contracts would just return farming to the 1960's with processors dictating production through contracts. Contracting with processors another form of quota. You can run from legislated marketing but you cant hide from processors supply and demand. One year you will have a contract, the next you wont. No one will have complete confidence in production anymore.

All of those arguments were used to support single desk selling in hogs, white beans, and wheat, but now, single desk selling for all of those items doesn't exist, and for good reason

Most farmers, are smart enough to see through the sort of wobbly arguments about processor control, and all of that sort of nonsense - it is high time dairy and poultry farmers came out of the mentality of 1955.

Stephen Thompson, Clinton ON

the good reason is so the processor has full control. who do you think was behind getting rid of single desk selling for hogs in ontario. processors made promises to producers to get them to vote to get rid of it. then several years later those same producers said the processors didn't hold up their end of the promises. unless you are in the hog business or have sat at the annual meetings in toronto during them votes don't spout off about things you know nothing about. single desk selling was the best thing for ontario hog producers, just ask anyone who has been in the business for 50 years and ask them if they made more money in the first 25 or last 25 years. but i am sure that you have an expert opinion on this also.

an ontario hog farmer who doesn't resent his sm neighbours

I've been in the hog business just as long as you and I am better off without the single desk system. The first 25 years was different in many ways than the second 25 years and it had nothing to do with single desk selling.
Single desk was a valuable tool years would be a hindrance to producers today.
I'm also better off without single desk selling with my wheat...times have changed and we have to adapt.
I'm an Ontario hog farmer and I strongly resent being made a second class citizen by the government (SM, ethanol).

You sound like someone on welfare.."l can't work because the Government won't find me a job"!!

Don't blame the Government for your own shortcomings,especially in a country like Canada.There are poor immigrants fighting tooth and nail to get into this country.

I agree...but not the way you see it.
I want the government out of the way not playing favourites and propping up inefficiencies and adding costs at all levels...are you on welfare...or just another form of government support?

Exactly!!! - I am an consumer and I want the CHOICE!!
The gov. and insiders seem to think it's not safe for me to choose, and by some twisted logic that I need to be only offered (cheap and homogenous products) that they "believe" I want (need?). Hey, I would love to try raw milk too, who has the natural right to stop me? OK, you say society has to pay for health care, well exactly - then let me choose what health plan I want (OHIP yet another centrally planned monstrous waste), it's a slippery slope to personal freedom, it is scary to many, but it's the way it should be.

Well then, YOU go ahead and shop at your grocery store. You can enjoy all the lesser grade, GMO (Genetically Modified Organisms) food offered there. I willingly pay more for organic, unadulterated quality food that keeps my family healthy, rather than the pesticide-laden, GMO food that (used to) make us sick. By the way, the reason their items are cheaper, is because our tax dollars subsidize the big agricultural companies (and leave the small farms to fend for themselves). The Internet and Netflix documentaries are a great source of information. Investigate. ;)

You go ahead and eat what ever you want . I will how ever ask you to prove your statement . Until then it is just hearsay .
I hear pigs ass is real tasty and nutricious . Saw that on Fearfactor !!

If your into the internet then you obviously have heard that Pesticides are showing up in Organic produce as well, also the report out of Great Britain showing Organic produce having no significant nutritional value over conventional produce.
..but certainly a price difference!

Well I almost hate to ask what he is feeding the pigs in the feeder . I would hazard a guess it is grain and corn . So why can't you feed it to cows ?
I have yet to see any one feed chickens to cattle . Sounds more like an quack .

Sounds like Mr. Black is on a recruitment campaign for his organization.Might cost him a lot of money and wasted time.

That isn't value , that is laughable .
What do you propose to do with a toonie or worse yet 2 loonies ?

Today's chicken and dairy farmers are as close to public sector employees, as stink is to manure. It is offensive to all Canadians that these farmers sit on boards with government to determine price. Raube Beuerman

The quota system works very well to have a regular supply of milk and poultry products for Canadian consumers. Most of the posters on this forum are "wannabees".....pork and beef farmers who wished they could make a living at farming without becoming Accountants or taking a full time job to be able to farm on the side.
Hopefully Mr Black can stay focused on his issue and has really deep pockets.....bullying again
Stan Holmes

There is 30 million plus wanabees in this country who are bullied by sm many of which are just releasing it and to put down someone for working a outside job to keep the farm going shows the I bought my right to make money mentality to the forefront

Ah, the old "draft statement" game. This dubious tactic was used by shady collection lawyers to scare stupid people into paying up. The idea was that the people were too ignorant to tell the difference between `a real claim and a threatened one. That's not the case here where you are dealing with lawyers who know the law and clients who are abiding by it. So whatever could be the reason for Mr. Black's "draft statement." Surely not publicity!

Could you cite the authority for involving the crown in a small claims matter prior to filing a claim?

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