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Federal Government Working With Farmers About Changes To Grain Act

Several farm groups and farmers themselves have made submissions, as the federal government reviews the Canada Grain Act.

It's been 35 years since the last major overhaul of the act. Even NAFTA was updated in that time. The Grain Growers of Canada says the new act must be relevant and responsive. Erin Gowriluk Executive Director of the Grain Growers of Canada shares that changes must be made.  "In the last 35 years, we saw the elimination of the single desk for wheat and barley, the growth of canola and the oil processing sector, as well as simply the size and sophistication of farms across the country, all of that has changed dramatically in the last 35 years.  There's really an opportunity now to have a conversation about how we're going to define the gold standard for grain quality in Canada and find better ways to uphold our global reputation as a trusted supplier of grain.  The Commission plays a central role, as we know, in sharing grain quality.  It's important that the operations of the Commission and the Act reflect the modern grain industry."

Gowriluk shares some of the specific asks of the Grain Growers of Canada in regards to changes in the Act.  "This is a conversation that has been going in the sector for a long time now. More recently we saw a number of legislative attempts that failed. We have had conversation around the mandate of the Canadian Grain Commission, the governance structure of the Canadian Grain Commission.  In both governance and mandate, how to keep producers interest front and centre, how the Commission ought to be funded, the types of services it should provide. We were very clear in our position in what the Commission ought to be doing in respect to outward weighing and inspection, producer protection provisions, producer payment security, and we also offered comments on how to ensure we embed more transparency and accountability into the system."

Gowriluk remains optimistic the federal government is sincere in making sure they get this right.  

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