Garneau discusses farming issues
by James Bradford
“I have a grandson, I would love for him to take it on,” said Larry Jinkerson. Jinkerson was talking about his grandson becoming a farmer.
Jinkerson and other local farmers met with Marc Garneau this past Saturday, March 10 at South Crest Farms co-ownded by Larry and his wife Barb Jinkerson.
Garneau was making his second visit to Lakefield in his campaign for the federal Liberal leadership.
Jinkerson is concerned with the future of farming in the province.
At the meeting a number of concerns were raised. One of the central ones was exporting livestock for processing into meat products, and purchasing foreign products that are competing with Canadian products.
“There is a lot more attention paid to health concerns, more than some of the countries we are importing from,” said Lise Leahy a dietitian, and the wife of a farmer, illustrating the production of meat in Canada is a costly process.
Jinkerson feels that having an abattoir east of Toronto would allow for more processing of meat locally, ultimatly helping to make farming more profitable.
Garneau asked, “Do you think consumers would be prepared to pay more to buy local?”
Deputy Mayor Andy Mitchell of the Township of Selwyn responded, “Consumers are willing to pay a premium...price isn’t the only issue.”
As family farms are passed on, Jinkerson makes the point, “Parent’s can’t just say, here’s the farm, they need a little cash to go somewhere to live.”
Jinkerson points out that if you could have some government support to set up an abattoir then a venture capitalist could step in and take on the project.
Copyright 2010 Lakefield Herald Ltd.
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