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Farmers Will Finally Get Their Wish

DearEditor,

Birthday parties are usually more fun. Instead, western Canadian wheat and barley farmers are capping off 68 years of being treated like second-class citizens. On October 12, 1943, the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) monopoly was born and imposed on western Canadian farmers when Canada was committed to supplying cheap wheat to Europe during the Second World War. From then on farmers would be forbidden to sell their wheat or barley to anyone but the CWB.

Since long before the CWB monopoly, western Canadian wheat and barley farmers have owned their land, tilled their land, planted their crop, and harvested their grain. As farmers fed families here in Canada and around the world, they have also assumed all the responsibility and risks of farming. Farmers have continuously produced safe, high-quality crops, even in the face of devastating floods, droughts and disease.

Times have changed and technology now allows commodities to be sold by the click of a mouse. Western Canadian farmers have become successful marketers of pulses and flax. They ve turned canola seeds into a thriving industry on the cutting edge of health science.

Western Canadian grain farmers are leaders in innovation, stewards of the environment and managers of multimillion-dollar businesses. Farmers, not the CWB, have grown Canada s reputation for world-class wheat and barley from the ground up. A lot has changed since the CWB monopoly was born, but still farmers do not have the right to choose how they sell their grain.

For these reasons, our government has committed to giving western Canadian farmers the right to choose how to market their wheat and barley, whether it s through a voluntary Canadian Wheat Board or on the open market. Our government intends to deliver on our promise and table legislation very soon.

So, Happy Birthday Monopoly! We ll help you blow out your candles. Farmers will finally get their wish.

Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz

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So, Happy Birthday Monopoly!We ll help you blow out yourcandles.

GERRY RITZ

AGRICULTURE MINISTER

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