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: Feb. 20, 1941
R.J. Moffatt, managing director of Saskatchewan Wheat Pool from 1926-31, died at age 68. Moffatt, who had been a director of Canadian National Railway since 1936, was described as a pioneer western farmer and one of the guiding forces in the early days of organizing Sask Pool.
Saskatchewan agriculture minister J.G. Taggart urged farmers to reduce wheat acreage by two million acres because of a dangerous feed situation developing in the province caused by increasing livestock numbers and declining coarse grain acres.
50 years ago: Feb.17, 1966
Sask Pool held its first winter farm family fairs in Ponteix, Shaunavon, Maple Creek and Swift Current. The new fairs were intended to provide producers with information they needed to run their farms.
Technical staff from the pool, the Dominion experimental farms, Saskatchewan Agriculture, the University of Saskatchewan, Federated Co-operatives Ltd. and Sask Power attended the fairs to lead discussions and answer questions.
Co-operatives had a successful year in Alberta in 1965 as sales increased by $41.5 million to $605 million. Livestock associations reported a good year, largely because of a 20 percent increase in cattle marketings and a six percent increase in hog marketings.
25 years ago: Feb. 21, 1991
Canada won a major victory against U.S. duties on Canadian pork when the U.S. International Trade Commission reversed its ruling that Canadian pork exports threatened the U.S. industry. However, the mood among Canadian hog producers wasn’t as bright as it could have been because the U.S. government still had 30 days to appeal the decision, which could then delay the final ending of the duties by six to eight weeks.
Manitoba Crop Insurance Corp. dropped the price for which it would insure hard red spring wheat to $90 a tonne. Jim Findlay, director of field services, said the decrease reflected poor market conditions. “That’s basically where the market is at,” he said.
10 years ago: Feb. 16, 2006
Chuck Strahl, the new Conservative government’s agriculture minister, said there would be no quick or radical changes to rules governing the Canadian Wheat Board and its export monopoly. He said he planned to be cautious and holistic when deciding what to do with the board. “It is not something you can just snap your fingers and make a change,” he said.
Third Avenue Management LLC, an investment firm and fund manager from New York City, became the biggest single shareholder in Sask Pool. Its 14 million shares gave it a 17.1 percent stake in the company.