ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED | JULY 4, 1925 | THE CANADIAN COUNTRYMAN
Conditions for farmers this year are more encouraging than they have been in some years. Debts incurred during the boom period are gradually being paid, and with the tendency of the prices of things farmers buy to come down and the price of what they have to sell to go up there is every justification for the increased optimism one meets at the present time.
After the slump in prices came there was a natural tendency to spend as little money as possible. This year in driving through the country we have noticed quite a lot of fixing up and remodeling of barns and homes in progress, which is evidence that agriculture is entering a period of greater prosperity.
Hard times did not strike the city as soon as it did the country. People in the cities were having comparative prosperity when a great many farmers were being driven to their wits’ end to keep the wolf from the door. While wages in the city are high there is still considerable unemployment, and it will probably be some time yet before the increased prosperity of farmers is reflected in the city. There is a direct connection between the price of pure-bred live stock and commercial live stock. At recent sales prices for pure-breds have averaged higher than prices paid for similar quality stock last year, which indicates that buyers of pure-bred livestock feel that the commercial end of the industry is due for better times.
The patrons of cheese factories and creameries this year are benefitting from higher prices for cheese and butter. Cheese prices at the opening of the season were about six cents per pound higher than last year, and prices have been well maintained. The creamery patron has not received quite as high prices proportionately as the cheese farmer, but the price of cream is higher than last year and the tendency is for it to climb up to the cheese level. The sheep industry has been flourishing for some time past and hog prices are about five dollars per hundred higher than they were this time last year. Prices for beef cattle have not been encouraging, but the economists are unanimous in declaring that the tendency will now be upwards.
With more prosperous conditions in the country we may expect to see better conditions in the towns and cities ere long. Not so very long ago city people were inclined to wonder what farmers were complaining about. They thought they could hold onto their good times quite irrespective of what was happening to the farming industry. By this time they should be thoroughly convinced of the fact that their prosperity depends absolutely on that of agriculture.