The Canadian Grain Commission is walking back on changes to test weight standards.
The commission originally decided to align export tolerances for test weight and total foreign material for 5 different class of Canadian wheat, effective August 1st, but that’s now been repealed.
This comes after stakeholders raised concerns, including the Saskatchewan Wheat Development Commission, Agricultural Producers Association of Saskatchewan, National Farmers Union, and the Western Canadian Wheat Growers Association, to name a few.
Chair of SaskWheat Brett Halstead says they’re happy with the reversal.
“I think it’s really helped that there’s been a wide number of farm groups from all different avenues that have spoke out against these changes so it’s a pleasant day today to hear that farmers do have a voice yet.” Halstead said.
“The majority of the farmers on the CGC Western Standards Committee were opposed to these changes. These are the farmers that represent the many prairie farmers who would be negatively impacted by the proposed changes,” stated Daryl Fransoo, Chair of the Wheat Growers in a statement.
For the Wheat Growers this comes two days after sending a joint letter with the National Farmers Union, asking the Federal Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Lawrence MacAulay, to stop the changes.
“We’re pleased with the fast response to our appeal to Min. MacAulay and the CGC’s acknowledgement that this was opposed by the majority of Canadian farmers,” Fransoo added.
“This is a tremendous success for farmers. It demonstrates the importance of organized policy advocacy that puts farmers’ interests first.” said NFU Former President Terry Boehm in a news release.
“This is good news for wheat producers,” APAS President Ian Boxall said. “Higher grading standards for test weight and foreign material increase the risk that producers would receive lower grades for their production. This move could have negatively impacted farm revenue for years to come.”
“We thank the CGC for responding to these concerns and providing certainty as we approach the harvest season. The CGC and its standards committees play an important role in our industry and APAS strongly supports a CGC mandate to work in the interests of grain producers.”
“We’re pleased to see the CGC listening to the concerns of producers on this file,” Boxall concluded.
The classes of wheat that would have been subject to the changes are Canadian Western Red Spring, Hard White Spring, Extra Strong, Soft White Spring, and Amber Durum, and Canadian Northern Hard Red.