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Dairy, Poultry and Egg Farmers Reject WTO Proposal on Agriculture


December 9, 2008
By Dairy Farmers of Canada

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NEWS HIGHLIGHT

Dairy, Poultry and Egg Farmers Reject WTO Proposal on Agriculture
Canadian dairy, poultry and egg farmers call on the Government to stand
strong on its rejection of the proposals on sensitive products of the draft text on modalities published over the weekend by Crawford Falconer, Chair of the Agriculture Negotiations Committee at the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Gyslain Loyer, Chair of Canadian Hatching Egg Producers, said, "We are encouraged to see that the government is unwavering in its determination to deliver on its position for dairy, poultry and egg farmers and our industries in Canada. We echo the opposition expressed by Government yesterday about
provisions of this text that fail to reflect a non-negotiable aspect of the Canadian position."
       
"This text remains detrimental to supply management in Canada," said Jacques Laforge, President of Dairy Farmers of Canada. "While they technically acknowledge, for the first time, issues for supply management, the provisions for 'sensitive products' continue to be devastating to the Canadian dairy,
poultry and egg sectors. They mean about one billion dollars in losses for dairy farmers alone," he said.
       
Laurent Souligny, Chair of Egg Farmers of Canada, stated, "The Government has committed not to compromise the sound foundations of the Canadian agricultural economy, including supply management, that are functioning and delivering multiple benefits to Canadians. We are looking forward to working
with the Government to ensure there is no negative economic impact to our farmers as a result of these negotiations."

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David Fuller, Chair of Chicken Farmers of Canada, also commented on the WTO negotiations. "While influential world leaders have pushed to secure a trade deal at the WTO, we remain concerned that implementing these modalities would damage the stability and prosperity of our industries under supply
management and compromise the related jobs of 215,000 people," he said.

Mark Davies, Chair of the Canadian Turkey Marketing Agency, highlighted the need for the Government to ensure that Canadian consumers continue to have a ready access to quality, local food products. "The Canadian market is very valuable and important; over 70 per cent of domestic agricultural and agri-food
revenues come from sales of food within Canada."

As another ministerial meeting potentially draws near, dairy, poultry and egg farmers are counting on the Government to take every possible action at the WTO to preserve the three pillars of supply management in Canada.