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Ag in the House: June 3 – 7

Ag in the House: June 3 – 7

Quebec MPs asked when farmers will receive AgriRecovery support

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

The first mention of farmers or agriculture in the House of Commons during question period last week came on June 6.

Yves Perron, the ag minister for the Bloc, asked when Quebec farmers would receive AgriRecovery support.

“Quebec already asked the federal government in November for a one-time relief payment through the AgriRecovery program,” he told the House. “The farmers needed it in November. We are in June. When will the minister offer reasonable compensation through the AgriRecovery program without unnecessary red tape?”

Francis Drouin, the parliamentary secretary to the minister of agriculture, responded.

He reminded the House that AgriRecovery is a joint program between the federal and provincial governments, and a decision will be made in due time.

Perron pressed the government in his follow-up question, sharing that employees at Saladexpress, a processor in Châteauguay—Lacolle, arrived at work to find the doors locked.

“This means that a lot of our growers found out just this morning, after the planting season, that they had lost their one and only buyer,” Perron said before asking for a date when the minister will launch AgriRecovery.

Drouin’s response reiterated that the province and federal government must work together on this, and committed to working to ensure programs respond faster to these kinds of challenges.

On June 7, a different Quebec MP continued the call for Ottawa to support farmers.

Monique Pauzé, the MP for Repentigny, said the federal government moves quickly to support oil companies but drags its feet for everyday Canadians.

“There is nothing for farmers whose crops were destroyed last year by natural disasters,” she said. “Why is the government quick and generous with oil companies, but slow and cheap with ordinary Canadians?”

Adam van Koeverden, the parliamentary secretary to the environment and sport ministers, responded by saying last year the Liberals have implemented a clean fuel standard. 

Yves Perron continued to pressure the government to support Quebec farmers on June 11.

He and members of Quebec’s ag sector gathered on Monday morning to call on the federal government to enact AgriRecovery.

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