Saturday, February 25, 2012

Former Wheat Board directors lose bid to suspend new Wheat Board law

Eight former directors of the Canadian Wheat board lost their bid to suspend the new Conservative law that would end single desk selling by the board. Eight former members dismissed by the Conservative government had asked for an injunction suspending implementation of the law until Canadian courts had ruled on its validity.

The eight former directors argued that a referendum among western grain producers had to be held before the monopoly rule could be changed. They also argue that the changes will hurt Canadian farmers. The U.S. and big grain companies have been fighting to end the monopoly for years.

Otttawa abolished single desk sell in a law passed late last year and wants to have an open market in place for wheat and barley by this crop year. The former directors were elected by farmers but were terminated with the passage of the legislation by the Harper government.

The Wheat Board monopoly has been in place for Prairie Farmers since the 1940s. The Conservatives campaign promises included ending the monopoly even though a majority of farmers in a poll supported the board monopoly. The Conservatives also promised a referendum which was never held. The Conservatives claim their election was the referendum! Ironically the Conservatives have strong support on the prairies. For more see this article.

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