Wheat Board Director Challenges Comments By Ag Minister Ritz
Published: Tuesday, March 25, 2008
I was quite taken aback to hear Federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz describe the majority of farmers in my district as the "tin-foil hat and decoder-ring crowd" for supporting single-desk selling. Recognizing that one seller can command a higher price than multiple sellers doesn't make us crazy -- it makes us entrepreneurs, ones who care more about our bottom line than partisan politics.
I'm more curious as to what the minister's comments say about him. Sixty per cent of the farmers in my district supported my campaign in the last wheat board elections. I campaigned on a platform of supporting the single desk, against an incumbent who supported the myth of the dual market. I would think an elected politician would support the democratic will of the farmers in my district. It appears the minister is unwilling to accept he should be listening to more of the 70,000 grain producers in Western Canada rather than the 130 members of the Western Barley Growers and the 400-odd members of the Western Canadian Wheat Growers. Perhaps he should also listen to the farmer-elected directors on the wheat board instead of telling us to get the hell out of this government's way!"
-Regina Leader Post