Industry has heard from our customers that recent transportation challenges have resulted in negative impacts to Canada’s reputation as a reliable shipper of quality grains, oilseeds, and pulses. These negative impacts would be very detrimental if they occur again and become a regular occurrence. There is a need for the entire sector to ensure that the challenges with grain shipments do not happen again. The Order in Council (OIC), which establishes minimum grain volume shipments, is scheduled to expire on March 28, 2015, and consideration should be given to whether a renewed OIC would help prevent these negative impacts.
The grains, oilseeds, and pulse sector has seen tremendous growth over the last number of years. The size of last year’s crop was approximately 76.1 million metric tonnes (MMT). This is significantly less than the 97.1 MMT seen in the 2013-14 crop year but also significantly higher than the 21 year average of 68.2 MMT. Productivity and crop evolution will continue to boost yield , despite annual fluctuations. A renewed OIC should support a sector that continues to provide growth opportunities and contributes to the growing Canadian economy. This will demonstrate to our customers and to investors that Canada is committed to the agriculture sector’s growth and to creating an investment climate that is positive for the entire value chain.