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Our history: February 1972

As far as we can tell, this “fits in your trunk” snowmobile advertised in our Feb. 3, 1972 issue did not catch on, but stories over the next few weeks remind us that some issues never go away. On the U.S.-Canadian hog dispute front, Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau had announced a deficiency payment of $25 million or about $5 per hog due to “disastrous levels” of prices. The calculation took into account the effect of the U.S. surtax. Agriculture Minister H.A. Olson asked that “sound reasoning and business judgment is made before there is any rush back into overproducing hogs.”

Hog payments were not the only thing on Mr. Trudeau’s mind that week. In the same issue, Ottawa columnist Henry Heald welcomed the arrival of Justin Pierre James Trudeau. “With a heritage like yours, you can hardly lose. Anybody who can arrange to be born on Dec. 25 doesn’t need much help. The phrase ‘with a silver spoon’ is most inadequate to describe the potential for your future.”

Elsewhere in that issue, an op-ed piece from Unesco warned that human tinkering with the climate could lead to a disappearance of Arctic sea ice.

And in grain company merger news, circa 1972, it was announced that the Prairie Pools had offered to purchase Federal Grain, the largest private company at the time. The purchase of 1,092 country and terminal elevators was later successful, giving the Pools 60 per cent of the handling capacity on the Prairies.

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