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Officials share their insight about on-farm wealth

June 26, 2009
Representatives of the National Farmers Union from Renfrew County have issued a statement about input suppliers capturing 99.6 percent of the wealth generated from Canadian farming during the past 24 years, using numbers from Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and Statistics Canada.


June 26, 2009
By Pembroke Daily Observer

June 25, 2009

Dave Mackay, president of the Renfrew County National Farmers Union (NFU) reports that according to Agriculture Canada and Statistics Canada, during the past 24 years, input suppliers have captured 99.6 percent of the wealth generated on Canadian land.


Farmers have produced and sold an overall average $388 per acre per year. But farmers have been forced to make do with just $1.45 per acre per year (overall Canadian average) in the form of net income from the markets – government payments excluded.


According to a release from the NFU, the corporations that provide farm inputs and services -fertilizer and chemical companies, banks -captured the other $386 per acre. The share of the wealth flowing to farm input and service corporations is 266 times larger than the share that stays on family farms. (All figures adjusted for inflation).


NFU women's president and Ontario farmer Colleen Ross and NFU Saskatchewan coordinator and farmer Glenn Tait appeared before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Agriculture recently.


Tait and Ross discussed with MPs the competitiveness of various agricultural and food sectors, as well as the declining level of competition among the dominant players in many of those sectors; MPs are preparing a report on competitiveness and competition. The NFU also presented a new analysis of net farm income, and a set of steps that could rapidly and afford-ably increase farmers' incomes. Ross and Tait outlined just how much money is being captured by fertilizer and fuel companies and other agri-businesses, and just how little is realized by farmers.

Nine-page analysis provided to politicians