Pullet growers denied supply management status

Agriculture Canada recently announced that it won’t grant Pullet Growers of Canada agency status under the Farm Products Agencies Act of Canada.

“We are disappointed, there’s no doubt about it,” said PGC chair Andy DeWeerd.

DeWeerd said that he is still waiting for something in writing from the department and remains hopeful that the government will change its mind.

“I did speak to ministry staff last week,” he said.

“Some of the reasons I’m holding confidential right now because I’m hoping they’ll change because I’m having a little trouble with some of the reasoning they gave.”

PGC represents producers who raise birds for the Canadian egg producing sector. Flock sizes typically number 20,000 with production of 40,000 birds a year.

The organization officially applied to the Farm Council of Canada during public hearings in Ottawa on July 17, 2012.

The proposed new marketing agency would have represented 550 pullet producers. Five provinces currently have organized their own marketing agencies: Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick.

Sector leaders argued that marketing power would give the industry control over prices, which would make it more stable and profitable.

It would have been the first new national supply management agency since a system for hatching eggs was created in 1986.

DeWeerd said the organization will continue to push for a new supply management agency with price-setting powers.

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