This ad in our January 13, 1972 issue urged readers to take advantage of lower long-distance rates on evenings and Sundays. While we couldn’t find statistics on local Manitoba calls, a three-minute Winnipeg-to-Montreal call cost $2.75 in 1970, which is $18 today.
Farmers would have a bit more money for phone calls after an announcement that month that the selling price for wheat consumed in Canada would be increased to $3 per bushel. International prices at the time were under $2.
That month the U.S. Department of Agriculture announced another move to hold down wheat surpluses. Farmers could be paid $28 per acre to take another five million to six million acres out of production, including by grazing winter wheat that had already been seeded. However, this came shortly before “The Great Grain Robbery,” when the Soviet Union secretly bought up huge supplies, creating a shortage and driving wheat prices to record levels.
Also announced that month was the end of the “Canada Northern” grades for red spring wheat. The CWRS designation has been adopted for the top grade at the start of the current crop year, but would be applied to the No. 2 and No. 3 grades the following Aug. 1, and Canada Northern dropped completely from the grading system.
A story that month said that a group of Soviet scientists had issued a warning against a scheme to use atomic power or some other means to melt the polar ice cap, thus opening up the northern route for shipping. They said monsoon rains would dominate the Arctic regions for most of the year with wet conditions as far south as the Great Lakes, while Europe, Southern Asia and Central America would suffer from drought.