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Ont. budget delivers risk management program


March 31, 2011
By Ontario Agriculture Sustainability Coalition

Topics

March 31, 2011, Guelph,
Ont – The establishment of a risk management program (RMP) was the single most
important action the Ontario government could have taken in today’s budget, say
farmers representing the Ontario Agriculture Sustainability Coalition (OASC).

March 31, 2011, Guelph,
Ont – The establishment of a risk management program (RMP) was the single most
important action the Ontario government could have taken in the recent budget, say
farmers representing the Ontario Agriculture Sustainability Coalition (OASC).

The new program will
help ensure the economic success of Ontario’s non-supply managed commodities,
which include fruits, vegetables, beef, pork, veal, lamb, and grains and
oilseeds.

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OASC leaders praised the
provincial government for delivering this much-needed tool to Ontario farmers,
but also renewed their call for the federal government to join in the program.

“The Premier, Minister
of Agriculture, and Finance Minister have earned our thanks as the
establishment of RMP will be a critical tool to give our farmers the
predictability, stability and bankability they need to move their businesses
forward,” says Bette Jean Crews, president of the Ontario Federation of
Agriculture
.

“Today, the provincial
government demonstrated its commitment to Ontario’s farmers," adds Henry
Stevens, president of the Christian Farmers Federation of Ontario. “RMP
was by far the best solution that offered farmers the support they have been
requesting and the most hope for their future.”

OASC members will press
all federal candidates to follow the province’s lead and provide their share of
financial support for the RMP so that farmers would receive the benefits of a
fully funded program. A pilot risk management program has been funded for the
last four years by the provincial government for Ontario's grains and oilseeds
sector.

“This announcement is a
game-changer for Ontario farmers who today have good reason to be optimistic
about their future,” says Mark Wales, chair of the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable
Growers' Association
Safety Nets Committee.

The Ontario Agriculture
Sustainability Coalition
was formed to help secure sustainable, bankable and
predictable risk management programming for non-supply managed farmers in
Ontario. Coalition members include the Ontario Cattlemen’s Association, the
Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers’ Association, Ontario Veal, Ontario Grains
& Oilseeds
, Ontario Pork and Ontario Sheep Marketing Agency, together with
the Christian Farmers’ Federation of Ontario and the Ontario Federation of
Agriculture
.