The Western Producer takes a weekly look at some of the stories that made headlines in issues of the paper from 75, 50, 25 and 10 years ago.
75 years ago: April 16, 1942
Canada and the United States agreed to work together to better use their agricultural resources for the war effort. In one arrangement, oil-bearing crop production would be increased in the U.S., while Canada would grow more oats, barley and flax.
The countries also agreed to allow the seasonal movement of farm labour and equipment across their borders.
J.G. Taggart, Saskatchewan’s agriculture minister and food controller under the Wartime Prices and Trade Board, urged his province’s farmers to produce more hogs, flax and course grains.
He said this would not only benefit them financially but would also increase supplies of essential war materials.
50 years ago: April 20, 1967
A Manitoba judge acquitted a producer who was charged with selling eight bags of onions outside of the province’s Vegetable Marketing Commission. The judge ruled that the provincial Natural Products Marketing Act, under which the commission was formed, was outside the jurisdiction of the province and constitutionally invalid.
The effectiveness of the National Farmers Union’s machinery boycott was still up in the air.
The NFU said enough farmers would support the boycott to make it effective, while machinery dealers reported steady and in-creasing sales. The boycott had been launched as a way to force a better deal for farmers.
25 years ago: April 16, 1992
The port of Churchill was said to be on the verge of bankruptcy and would need either a significant volume of grain or a direct cash transfer from the federal government if it was to get through another season.
“Churchill is now effectively broke,” Canada Ports Corp. official T.A. Lauzon told the Hudson Bay Route Association’s annual meeting.
Improving world wheat prices finally became a reality for prairie producers when the federal government increased the initial payment for No. 1 CW red spring wheat by $8 a tonne to $109 a tonne.
10 years ago: April 19, 2007
The federal government proposed eliminating the kernel visual distinguishability component of the grain variety registration system by 2010. It also promised a sustainable funding solution for the Canadian Grain Commission.
Lentil growers said no to a proposed marketing board for their crop. A report commissioned by Saskatchewan Pulse Growers had included a marketing board option, but polling of the industry found no appetite for such an initiative and it was removed from the list of marketing ideas being contemplated by the association.