In the dismantling of Canada's food security, farmers have become both agents and victims of transnational corporations. There will be no resolution to the crisis in our food system unless farmers' interests and perspectives are taken fully into account.
"The problem isn't the ability of agriculture to generate wealth. Agriculture does that and it does it well. The challenge is to make sure that wealth is distributed appropriately along the value chain. We need to find a way to ensure that more of the wealth generated in the agriculture industry flows back to the farm.
"The family farm is at the very centre of the agri-food chain. From one end we purchase energy, fertilizer, seed, chemical, and other inputs at retail prices. At the other end we rely on packers, commodity traders, processors, and retailers to purchase our crops at wholesale. Both ends are dominated by a few massive transnational corporations. Governments talk about free trade and 'level playing fields,' but we farmers face monopolies when we are purchasing and when we are selling."