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Cool deals on refrigerators

Our History: January 1954

Electricity was still a novelty for some farms in 1954, and the Manitoba Power Commission — later Manitoba Hydro — was looking to encourage consumption by advertising appliances. This Leonard model refrigerator, trimmed in gold and green, was available for $279.50, or $2,627 in 2019 dollars.

In news for that issue, officials of the Manitoba Dairy and Poultry Co-operative expressed concern about a 20 per cent increase in the purchase of turkey poults. They warned that the Canadian market could not absorb the increase at the previous year’s prices, and that there were also large supplies in the U.S. A Manitoba Department of Agriculture official was concerned that “a number of people who have never kept turkeys are planning to raise them this summer. This is certainly not the year to take the plunge.”

U.S. seed dealers were reportedly offering up to $100 per bushel for seed of Selkirk wheat, which had recently been developed and was resistant to the 15 B rust strain which had been devastating Prairie crops. Only members of the Manitoba and Saskatchewan seed growers’ associations were eligible to purchase the seed at $4.50 for certified and $5.50 for registered Selkirk. However, another story said that Selkirk was not resistant to 15 B-3, a new rust race which had been discovered near Regina.

A luncheon meeting of the Manitoba Federation of Agriculture and Co-operation heard a speaker from the Manitoba Gardeners Co-operative who expressed concern about imports of U.S. carrots and cabbages. This was despite news from another speaker from the University of Manitoba, who said tests of Manitoba cabbage had shown it to have a higher quality than imports.

A representative from the Manitoba branch of the Canadian Association of Consumers urged the farmers to do a better job of marketing. “You are selling a product but you don’t know how good it is yourself. You did not have these figures on cabbages until we asked for them, when you sought our help in selling your product.”

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