The Canadian Federation of Agriculture represents over 200,000 farm families from coast-to-coast-to-coast. As the national voice of farmers, the following priorities represent the shared priorities of many regions, commodities and sectors within agriculture.
Canadian agriculture has incredible potential both as an economic engine for Canada’s recovery, and also as a natural climate-change solutions provider. But this potential can only be unleashed with the proper support, incentives and investments. Below you will find the opportunities agriculture can provide for Canada, the obstacles preventing growth, as well as key recommendations that CFA will be approaching each party with to ensure that Canadian agriculture is a priority for every potential government that may form following the election.
During the lead-up to the election, CFA will be hosting its traditional Agriculture Leaders Debate, which brings together the key agricultural representatives from each party to debate on the most pressing issues in Canadian agriculture. Click here to view the debate from 2019!
Opportunities for Canada
Canadian agriculture has incredible economic and environmental potential that can benefit all Canadians:
- Farmland is a natural climate solutions provider.
- Infrastructure investment will drive and spur innovation in rural areas.
- Innovation will drive environmental solutions and economic recovery.
Obstacles Preventing Growth
- The Agricultural Policy Framework provides insufficient funding, with the levels failing to even keep up with inflation.
- Farmers face increased cost for climate-change initiatives.
- Lack of support as a climate solutions provider.
- Lack of investment in infrastructure.
List of Recommendations:
- That the government increase financial support through the next Agriculture Policy Framework:
- Create a national direct payment program to compensate producers for environmentally beneficial practices.
- Develop a strategy to address geopolitical barriers to trade and competitors’ trade supports.
- Enhance risk management responsiveness to supply chain and climate-related disruptions.
- That the government leverage agriculture’s full breadth of potential environmental benefits:
- Establish carbon pricing exemptions for necessary climate change mitigation activities.
- Implement an accessible, broad suite of agricultural offset protocols.
- Create additional ecological goods and services programming.
- That the government invest in critical infrastructure needs:
- Strategically invest in two interconnected national initiatives, One Health Canada and Growing Canada, to modernize and upgrade labs, classrooms and research equipment that will be vital in training the future highly-skilled agri-food workforce.
- Lower the threshold for eligible projects in federal connectivity funding and allow bundling of multiple projects to ensure small service providers can access funding.
- Re-establish the CRTC’s High-Cost Service Area fund.
- Establish basic minimum standards for service and rates.
- Maintain and grow the National Trade Corridor Fund (NTCF).
- Commit to a railway costing review to recalibrate the Maximum Revenue Entitlement (MRE).
- That the government secure the future and safety of farmers
- Commit that the intent of Bill C-208 will be maintained and that farmers will not face a higher tax burden when transitioning their farm to a family member rather than a third party.
- Modernize the Canada Grain Act to ensure the act protects producer’s interests.
- Strengthen deterrence of activism on the farm, in aquaculture, fur farms, livestock transportation, food processing, and for acts of introducing harmful material to food products
To view a more detailed explanation of these priorities, click here to view CFA’s recent Pre-Budget Submission.