Save Our Fam­ily Dairy Farms

Stanstead Journal - - FORUM -

Last week, Par­lia­ment de­bated an NDP mo­tion on the di­afil­tered milk is­sue. I was very proud to stand up in the House of Com­mons to de­fend our re­gion's dairy farm­ers. Di­afil­tered milk is a milk protein con­cen­trate from the United States de­signed to cir­cum­vent Cana­dian reg­u­la­tions and laws. Due to in­ac­tion from the pre­vi­ous and cur­rent gov­ern­ments, this di­afil­tered milk, which is gelati­nous in form, is used in­stead of fresh milk from our pro­duc­ers. In 2015, the quan­tity of this prod­uct that was im­ported in­creased sub­stan­tially. As a re­sult, Cana­dian pro­duc­ers lost a to­tal of over $220 mil­lion - $15,000 per year per pro­ducer. This prob­lem af­fects all of the coun­try's dairy pro­duc­ers and has been drag­ging on for two years now. De­spite re­peated ap­peals from farm­ers, unan­i­mous mo­tions from the Que­bec Na­tional As­sem­bly and the nu­mer­ous ques­tions we have been ask­ing in ques­tion pe­riod, Justin Trudeau's gov­ern­ment re­fuses to act. Dur­ing the last elec­tion cam­paign, Cana­dian milk pro­duc­ers asked all par­ties to com­mit to solv­ing this prob­lem in the first 100 days of their man­date. The Lib­eral gov­ern­ment promised us ac­tion - but six months later we're still wait­ing. While she was cam­paign­ing, the fed­eral Min­is­ter and Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment for Comp­tonS­tanstead made a for­mal com­mit­ment to pro­tect sup­ply man­age­ment and to solve the is­sue of di­afil­tered milk which, as we know, has far-reach­ing con­se­quences for our ru­ral ar­eas, lo­cal econ­omy and food sovereignty. With each day that passes with­out a res­o­lu­tion for this is­sue, East­ern Town­ships' dairy pro­duc­ers con­tinue to be fi­nan­cially af­fected by this in­ac­tion. Min­is­ter Bibeau can­not shirk from her du­ties and only tell us that she is speak­ing to the Min­is­ter of Agri­cul­ture on this mat­ter; she has to come back here with a so­lu­tion right away. Di­afil­tered milk im­por­ta­tion is a clear breach in our sup­ply man­age­ment sys­tem. Our Min­is­ter and MP must sup­port the dairy in­dus­try and stand up for sup­ply man­age­ment. It was a prom­ise she had made to us and now, more than ever, she has to de­liver on it. Our fam­ily farms de­pend on it. We have to stay strong and united to de­fend our lo­cal pro­duc­ers! Pierre- Luc Dusseault Mem­ber of Par­lia­ment for Sher­brooke

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