Wednesday, 02 July 2014 14:35

Are farmers really better now without the old CWB system?

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Editor:
I read a letter which stated the farm gate price of wheat is about 40 per cent of the export price, than when the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB) handled the sales. It was about 80 per cent.


The inference was that the new system is not as good for farmers as before.
Then I read a letter which said farmers are much better off now. A farmer could have sold all the production last fall and so be better off.
I suggest you check this yourself. What was the export price last fall? The grain industry has the ability to be secretive about prices, but somebody discovered the export price for one day in February 2014 was more than $11 per bushel. We know farm gate prices last fall were higher than in February, so pick a number.
 You can calculate your average price using your normal contracting practice, some in the spring, more in July when you had a pretty good idea yields were higher than average and then topping up when harvest was over. I would be surprised if your average is much over 50 per cent of the number you picked.
 Does this make you wonder if the farmers who think they are better off now than when they had the old CWB suffer from cognitive dissonance? What is that? The ability to ignore or deny facts if they run counter to their cherished beliefs.
Lorne Jackson, Riverhurst

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