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: Dec. 3, 1942
The value of farm commodities marketed through co-operatives in Saskatchewan was up.
B.N. Arnason, commissioner of Saskatchewan Agriculture’s co-operation and markets branch, said grain was the exception be-cause of a general decline in grain handling due to crop failures in many areas in 1941.
The farm worker shortage, already aggravated by voluntary enlistment in the war, had been made worse by the introduction of selective service, said United Farmers of Alberta. “If the efficiency of Canadian farmers is regarded as desirable, there has been a serious bungling in manpower policy,” it said.
50 years ago: Dec. 7, 1967
The British Columbia Federation of Agriculture asked the provincial government to buy farmland on the edges of urban areas and then lease it back to producers.
The request was prompted by municipal zoning regulations that didn’t allow land to be subdivided as a way to control the growth of urban development.
The federation said these regulations didn’t allow farmers to reap the financial benefits of rising land prices and argued that the answer was to sell the land to the government.
A credit union in St. Paul, Alta., financed a landing pad for flying saucers that the town’s residents had recently built.
25 years ago: Dec. 3, 1992
In the first unanimous recorded vote in Saskatchewan Wheat Pool’s 68-year history, delegates solidly opposed the federal government’s proposal to pay the Crow Benefit to producers instead of the railways. Delegates pledged to personally fight the proposals to their “last drop of blood.”
Ottawa introduced legislation that would allow the Farm Credit Corp. to expand beyond financing only farmland and agricultural buildings and machinery. The legislation would allow FCC to also finance plans to expand farm businesses to include value-added processing.
10 years ago: Dec. 6, 2007
Agrium, the large Canadian fertilizer company, grew even larger with the purchase of another agricultural supply giant — UAP — which was North America’s biggest independent distributor of agricultural input products.
The deal cost Agrium $39 per share.
Alanna Koch, president of the Canadian Agri-food Trade Alliance, was appointed deputy agriculture minister in Saskatchewan. Koch, who eventually became deputy minister to the premier, is now running for the leadership of the Saskatchewan Party.