Category Archives: News Article

There’s no turning back for Canada in TPP talks

October 2, 2015

John Weekes, a senior business adviser at Bennett Jones, was Canada’s chief negotiator for NAFTA and is a former ambassador to the WTO. He is a director of the Alberta Livestock and Meat Agency and provides advice to the National Cattle Feeders’ Association.

As Canada completes the TPP agreement it should be focused on making sure Canadians can meet foreign competition at home and abroad on an even playing field. It is not just tariffs that affect trade but also subsidy programs that distort markets and decisions about where agricultural product should be produced. Such subsidies are already being negotiated in the WTO. Ottawa should press to revitalize these negotiations and at the same time ensure that foreign governments, including the U.S., are respecting their existing subsidy commitments. If necessary, Canada should commit to using the WTO dispute settlement system to make sure they do so.

Securing Canada’s agriculture future requires bold action today. Let’s hope its political leaders are up to the challenge.

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WTO Considering Canada’s $3.1 Billion COOL Retaliation Plan

September 18, 2015

The WTO has ruled against the U.S. meat labeling laws on four separate occasions, leaving Canada and Mexico with retaliation as the only card left to play in the extended trade dispute.

At the same time, the CCA is asking all federal parties in the Canadian election to commit to imposing the tariffs the moment Canada is authorized to do so by the WTO, unless the U.S. has repealed COOL and ended the incentive to segregate imported livestock.

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CFIA confirms Bluetongue found in Ontario Beef Cattle

September 5, 2015

On a conference call yesterday with the Market Access Secretariat, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and the CFIA, ACFA learned three beef cattle in southwestern Ontario tested positive for Bluetongue. They are Canada’s first cases of Bluetongue outside the Okanagan Valley and showed no clinical signs. The disease was discovered through regular testing being conducted every six months.

Bluetongue found in Ontario beef cattle

Opinion: A change to supply management won’t kill the family farm. Inertia will

August 14, 2015

Canada has finally placed the future of supply management on the table in TPP trade talks. However, with the election call, what’s at stake is not just the future of supply management, but our nation’s reputation. Our dairy sector deserves a comprehensive vision for its future by our Parliament, regardless of who is in power. Whether dairy farmers realize it or not, many more years of production under supply management will only bring greater uncertainty and grief.

Sylvain Charlebois is a professor at the Food Institute, University of Guelph

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