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Friday, August 12, 2011

End of the road 

I don't suppose the Canadian Wheat Board ever thought there was really any hope.
But they're going ahead and doing the responsible thing by holding a plebiscite on whether farmers support the Wheat Board or the open market for selling their wheat and barley.
And I don't suppose anyone really believed Agriculture minister Gerry Ritz when he insisted the Board would survive.
But now there's proof that it ain't gonna happen. Glen MacGregor at the Ottawa Sun has discovered a new procurement notice:
It announces the government intends to seek an auditor to check the books and “provide reasonable assurance of the total financial impact of the repeal of the Canadian Wheat Board Act and the dissolution or winding up of the CWB after the final pooling periods (expected to be July 31, 2012).”
And if they're wrapping it up by the end of July next year, there won't be any of the usual announcements in July about initial payments for the 2012 crop year. The initial payments announced this year were more than twice as high as last year, reflecting improving grain prices. And I wonder what is going to happen to the Advance Payments Program and any other early payments for next year's crop -- or if there are going to be any.
The Harper Conservatives act like we can sell our grain by Googling it.

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