July 20, 1904

?

James. W. C.@

Moore, Eldon, P.E.I., February, 1904 : Experience in chicken fattening has

proved to me what can be done in making the business a profitable investment. Before the fattening stations were established chickens were sent to market in a poor condition and could not realize more than 5 cents per pound. Now farmers can realize 10 cents per pound.

D. Marchbank, Montrose, P.E.I., January 25, 1904 : My opinion is that most of our farmers

make a great mistake in not taking more interest in the poultry 'business. I find it pays me for I ship my fowl to J. A. Leaman & Company, Halifax, and received 10 cents per pound for Mr. FISHER.

them last year. I received an order from them in February, stating that if I had any more of the same stock on hand they would pay 13 cents per pound, so I consider this much better than selling them in Alberton for 5 cents and 6 cents per pound.

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James. W. C.@

Moore, Eldon, P.E.I., February 1, 1904: Experience in chicken fattening has proved to me what can be done in making the poultry business a profitable investment. Before the fattening stations were established chickens were sent to market in a poor condition and could not realize more than 5 cents per pound. Now farmers are taking more interest in poultry and can realize 10 cents per pound.

If, by the expenditure of a few thousand dollars a year, such Information can be given to our farmers as to enable them to sell t'heir chickens at 10, 12 or 13 cents a pound, where they were formerly selling them for 5 cents a pound, I venture to say that tlie $4,000 or the $5,000 of expenditure is an absolutely good investment for the people of Canada. My hon. friend denounced me and the government pretty thoroughly for our extravagance and our increases of expenditure. I am willing to accept the full responsibility of the Increased expenditure on the experimental farms and the other branches of the Department of Agriculture. Whenever I can see any way of profitably expending money so that money can be put into the pockets of the farmer of Canada, I am going to come to this House and ask for that money ; and I am glad to say. and I am proud of the fact that my colleagues and the majority of the House have abundantly supported me in that policy. I am proud of the confidence of the House in this respect, and I can assure the House and hon. gentlemen opposite that I Will do my best to deserve that confidence in t'he future by studying how money can be profitably spent for the benefit of agriculture in Canada ; because in this young country, which is developing vast areas of agricultural land, a great live stock industry, including poultry. and various manufacturing industries which are closely allied with the agricultural interests, I venture to say that our prosperity largely depends on the success of our agriculturists. If to-day Canada is prosperous, if our trade and commerce is advancing by leaps and bounds, it is largely due to the 'fact that our farmers are increasing their products enormously from year to year, and are receiving extra prices for Them. The result is that they have a large amount of money to expend on manufactured products, and they help the transportation interest by supplying the articles to be ca,fried, and by consuming articles which have to be carried to them. Therefore. I believe that the expenditure of money on behalf of agriculture, if done wisely and well, is abundantly justified. When the hon. gentleman a little while ago was talking iu n loud voice, somebody said his thunder had been stolen. No, Mr. Speaker, it was not

the thunder that had been stolen. The thunder was all there ; the noise was ail : there ; but there was no lightening for the 1 lion, gentleman for it strikes nowhere and ! accomplishes no harm to those against whom he is speaking.

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CON

Haughton Lennox

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. HAUGHTON LENNOX.

Mr. Speaker, if the hon. gentleman who has just sat down had adopted throughout the whole of his speech the responsible attitude which he assumed in the last four or five sentences of it, perhaps we would not have so (much reason to complain ; but unfortunately it was only during the last four or five sentences that the hon. gentleman recollected that he was the representative of an 'intelligent and peaceful class of the community, the farmers of Canada. Before that he assumed an attitude which he has been fond of assuming lately, which I venture to say does not very well become him, that is, a belligerent attitude, in which he attempts to intimidate hon. gentlemen on this side of the House. So long as the hon. gentleman assumes the gentle, ladylike attitude which becomes him so well, we have no great reason to complain. The people of the country recognize that in having the hon. .gentleman as a representative of the farming class, they have not exactly a horny-handed son of toil. Still, they are prepared to believe that he is a respectable citizen of Canada, endeavouring, according to the light he possesses, which is not saying very much, to promote the interests of the farmers of Canada. . ,

But the hon. gentleman has not seen fit to meet the issue and has preferred to bluster and make an unseemly noise. The square issue is this. In his report on the experimental farm on page 429, the hon. minister gives the expenditure for the year ending 30th of .Tune, 1903, -as amounting to $84,128.18. That statement my hon. friend from Leeds has shown to be false and misleading. The true figures are $19,141.66 in excess of that amount. How that expenditure has been divided among the various farms is a matter of no practical interest at present. What we are concerned with is the fact that the total expenditure is over $103,000, whereas the hon. minister in his report puts it down as $84,000. On looking hurriedly at page Y-94 of the Auditor General's Report,, I find various items of expenditure in connection with the Central Farm at Ottawa-not one cent of which is included by the hon. min-minister in his statement, amounting to $8,205.68, showing the total expenditure to be $84,000. Again on turning to page V-112, I find an expenditure, for instance, of $1,430.22 in connection with the Ottawa Experimental Farm not included in his statement, and on the next page, V-113, I find an expenditure of $110.65, which is equally left out. The hon. gentleman has

been compelled to admit that in his statement he deliberately omitted the items, of coal and wood, light, &c.; and I venture to say that if he goes to the riding represented by the hon. member for (Leeds or any other riding in this country, he may speak for hours and will not be able to convince the people that he has any justification for leaving out of the expenditures connected with these farms for coal and wood and other items amounting to over $19,000. Let him speak for any length of time he chooses, he cannot prevent ther coming to the conclusion that any statement which does not include these items is a garbled and dishonest account. Therefore when the hon. minister instead of frankly telling us that he has blundered, tries to excuse himself by saying he has followed the system which was pursued in the old days, he is using an argument which will not commend itself to the people. The question is not what former governments have done, because we are bound to progress, and those who cannot keep pace with the march of progress had better get out and make way for others who can. Let me say to this gentleman, who used to he content with the sickle and the pruning hook, but who now, while he dangles a scythe from his left hand, swings the sword in his right, that it ill becomes him to speak as he has done, and that it would be much better for him to try and, give some reasonable explanation for his conduct. When he speaks, as he has done, of the constituents of my hon. friend from Leeds, as the gang led by that hon. gentleman, let me tell him that his head seems to be swelling larger and larger visibly because forsooth he thinks he has got the better of Lord Dundonald in the petty struggle | which he has forced on that, gentleman, and that when he attempts to decry the people who support such men as my hon. friend from Leeds and other members of the opposition in this House, he will learn perhaps before long that these men will show where their strength lies, and that even with his pruning hook and sword he cannot intimidate the great electorate of this country.

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LIB

Robert Holmes

Liberal

Mr. ROBERT HOLMES.

Mr. Speaker, I have no intention of following the hon. gentleman (Mr. Taylor) in his general argument, but only desire to deal in a genera! way with a matter which has been alluded to, and to which, as I am acquainted with the facts, I feel justified in calling attention. Reference has been made to the poultry stations, and the one established at Holmes-ville has been especially dealt with. Holmes-ville happens to be in my own riding. It is in the centre of a strongly Conservative part of the constituency. Yet I challenge any hon. gentleman on the opposite side to come into the riding of West Huron and attempt to convince the farmers there that the government's expenditure on the poultry station at Holmesville was an unwise or extravagant expendR'we and make a single

vote thereby. While the figures given in the Auditor General's Report show an apparent discrepancy between the receipts and expenditure, they are misleading to this extent, that, unless you know the circumstances, you cannot fairly judge as to the actual results of the work of the station As the bon. minister has said, there was no desire or expectation, in establishing these poultry stations-as is the case with other experimental stations-that they would be iself-susitaininig. But a large number \pf chickens are sold during the year after the Auditor General's Report is closed. If the report was made out to show the receipts for a year of the poultry station's operations, it would show that, except for expenditure on capital account-for buildings and so on -there would toe very little loss. As a result of the work of the station at Holmesville- and I speak only of that, for it is the one with whose work I am familiar-in our section of the country, where we formerly bought chickens at 25 cents and 30 cents a pair the farmers are now selling them, as stated by the hon. minister, at 10 cents per pound. The people have so improved their raising of poultry through the lessons they learned in connection with the poultry station that they are now supplying the local demand at 10 cents per pound-and let me say that they cannot fully supply the demand even at that price. The hon. gentleman may take exception to anything he likes an connection with the Department of Agriculture, hut I challenge him again to take exception in West Huron to the work of the poultry station in that riding. Even the hon. gentleman's Conservative friends endorse it. I know a large number of Conservatives who believe that it has been one of the best institutions ever established under the Department of Agriculture. Men who, at the outset, thought it nothing but an election dodge, are willing to admit that it has been practically useful in the development of the poultry industry.

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LIB

Aaron Abel Wright

Liberal

Mr. A. A. WRIGHT.

Inasmuch as something has been said concerning the poultry stations, and as the station established in the town of Renfrew has been referred to, I shall say a word in defence of it, if defence is required. I d'o not think that any one in the Dominion expects that the experimental farm is going to be an unqualified success financially, and that the balance will invariably be on the right side. But I know that throughout the length and breadth of the Dominion the people are fully satisfied with the work done there. If anything were necessary to prove that fact that proof would be found in the large number of excursions that come to the farm every year from every part of the Dominion of Canada. The farmers come because they expect to learn something, and they go away satisfied because they have learned something. And let me say one word of the work that is being carried on by Professor Saunders Mr. HOLMES.

at that farm. If nothing else had been accomplished by the experimental farm except the successful crossing of wheat and the production of new varieties which will ripen two or three days earlier than others of equal usefulness and value, these experiments alone would make the experimental farm system an unqualified success. These new varieties of wheat will put millions of dollars into the pockets of the farmers of the Northwest, for they are looking for a wheat that will ripen early. The farmers are getting rich every day under the patronage of this government, and that I shall be able to prove. With reference to cool curing of cheese, if there is one thing in relation to the cheese industry which stands out prominently above the others as a marked success, it is the cool curing. If anything were necessary to prove that, I can furnish that proof. It is only a few weeks ago that a deputation of farmers came from the township of Ross to my own town of Renfrew, to the creamery company there, and asked if they could not make arrangements for the cool curing of cheese for the various factories in that section. They said that about twenty factories wanted to bring in cheese and have us cool them and keep them, because we have large cold storage rooms and we could care for the cheese better than they could be cared for elsewhere. They said they could get more for cheese that was cool-cured, and besides there was not the shrinkage that there was under the other system of curing, and they were prepared to give fair remuneration if we would undertake this work for the various factories in that vicinity. And that matter has been taken uip for consideration. What the result may be it is impossible for me to say. Now, with reference to the chicken industry. Of course, nobody expected that these experiments were going to be a financial success in themselves, because it is impossible for one to get at once the right kind of chickens to make a success of the system of fattening. The first year it is likely to be a comparative failure. The next year they get a better class of chickens, and year by year the financial results are more favourable. With reference to the industry In my own town, I remember the difficulty we had in selling eggs years ago- say in 1893, Chickens were bought at 5 cents per pound, and we were glad to get rid of them at that price. The difficulty was to sell them. Now, the thing is changed, and chickens are readily sold at good prices. The same was true of eggs. In 1893 we bought them and sold them at S cents per dozen. Allow me to give you one little incident with reference to the eggs : and I hope, Mr. Speaker, you will pass it over to the hon. member for South Leeds (Mr. Taylor). In 1893 I was purchasing thousands and thousands of dozens of eggs at 8 cehts a dozen. A farmer came to my store with a basket of eggs and asked me what I would give him. I said : ' The best

I can do is 8 cents a dozen. I>o you see j those cases outside ? I have just sold them at 7$ cents a dozen-I am losing a quarter of a cent on every dozen.' ' Well,' he said,

* what are the farmers of this country going to do ? We cannot raise eggs at that price. We will have to go to the other side, or do something else. The fact is that that price will not pay for the wear and tear of the hens.' Now, let me show you how all this is changed. And, in order to show, I will read a few lines from a circular I received the other day from Montreal:

Montreal, June 14th.

Dear Sir,-We will give you 14 cents for all the fresh eggs you can ship this week.

How does that compare with 8 cents a dozen in the old Conservative days ? I think that the farmers realize that they are living under a different administration, and will give credit to whom credit is due. Now,

1 wish to say a word with reference to the fattening of chickens.

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CON

Rufus Henry Pope

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. POPE.

What do you pay for eggs ?

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LIB

Aaron Abel Wright

Liberal

Mr. WEIGHT.

We pay 15 cents a dozen, and cannot get enough of them at that. Now, let me read an extract from the Renfrew ' Mercury ' of February 14th, 1902-this date being just a short time after the chicken fattening station had been established in Renfrew. And let me call your attention to the fact, and to ask you to bear it in mind, that the person who gives the information to the Renfrew 1 Mercury ' is Mr. David Muirhead, a leading Conservative in our town, and president of the Farmers' Institute :

An Admaston farmer resolved to make a test -to see if in farm practice there was really any profit in fattening chickens on the plan followed at the government's experimental station here a short time ago. So he took 30 ordinary chickens-not. at all large ones-and fed them on oats and barley, mixed with low grade flour-for five weeks, and then sent 24 of them off to a Montreal commission merchant whose name was one of several which had been furnished him by Mr. F. C. Hare, the government's demonstrator. He received answer that the 24 fowl had weighed 158 pounds, and remittance was made -for them at the rate of 11 cents (eleven) cents a pound in Montreal. The ex-pressage cost the Admaston farmer 80 cents per 100 pounds, so that he received $10.20 per 100 pounds net for his fowl. The fowl were kept confined in coops, were fed twice a day, and in the five weeks the thirty ate 8 bushels of oats,

2 bushels of barley, and 100 pounds of low-grade (unsaleable) flour with just enough skim-milk added to make the food moist. Water to drink and gravel to peck were supplied. The farmer was so well pleased with the result of his experiment, that he will fatten more chickens next year. He knows nothing that pays better for the amount of labour involved. The merchant to whom he sold rather took his breath away by writing that if he could supply broilers weighing II or 2 pounds in April or May, he would get 45 cents a pound for them.

I wish to place before the House account sales of the eggs that were shipped from my town last winter. I have here an invoice of eggs which were sold to Bate & Co., in Ottawa :

February 10, 12 dozen fresh eggs at 40 cents, $4.80.

How does that compare with your eight cents under the Conservative rule ?

February 17, 12 dozen fresh eggs at 40 cents, $4.80.

February 19, 12 dozen fresh eggs at 40 cents, $4.80.

February 26, 24 dozen fresh eggs at 40 cents, $9.60.

March 4, 24 dozen fresh eggs at 35 cents, $8.40.

March 11, 24 dozen fresh eggs at 35 cents, $8.40. a total of $40.80.

This will show you whether there is money in raising eggs if you do it properly.

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CON

Richard Blain

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. BLAIN.

Might I ask what change has been brought about by this government to cause the price of eggs to go up ?

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CON

Edward Cochrane

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. COCHRANE.

They have got a lot of suckers around.

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LIB

Aaron Abel Wright

Liberal

Mr. WRIGHT.

They are teaching the people how to raise the eggs, and to have them for market at a proper time. They also have helped to obtain a market for them. We are getting a home market now and we are also getting more for anything sent abroad than we got before. I have here some invoices of eggs sent to Walter Paul, of Montreal. Here is one :

January 25, 9 dozen eggs at 40 cents, $3.60.

January 25, 3 dozen eggs, small, at 30 cents, 90 cents.

This shows you the discrimination there is now. In the old days there was not this discrimination.

I have here also an invoice for eggs shipped to Mr. Henry Gatehouse, of Montreal :

January 12, 24 dozen eggs at 30 cents, $7.20.

I have others which show about the same rates.

I have here also invoices of chickens sent to Mr. Gatehouse.

Here is one :

October 1, 2 coops chickens, 60 - 66=126 at 12 cents, $15.12.

That certainly^, is better that the 5 cents a pound which we got in the old days.

Here is another :

March, 30, 50 pounds fowl at 9 cents a pound, $4.50.

There were 6 fowls in this and they netted him 75 cents each.

Here is another one :

October 30, 139 pounds chickens at 10 cents a pound, $13.90.

There were 20 chickens in this lot so that they netted him 70 cents each. Surely this

ought to prove that the lessons which have been given to the farmers in our section of the country have been productive of much good. If any other evidence is necessary to prove that the farmers are doing better than they did we can find it in the export of farm produce which is now being made. In 1896 we exported only $50,000,000 worth of farm products whereas last year we exported no less than $114,000,000. In 1896 we sent in round numbers only $14,000,000 worth of cheese, whereas last year we sent out $25,000,000 worth. Surely this shows that this country is progressing and that the farmers are moving onward.

A good deal of fault has been .found with regard to the Minister of Agriculture himself, the statetnent being made that he is not a proper man to fill that position. I would like to show you how an outsider regards the present Minister of Agriculture. Here is a letter which was published in the Renfrew ' Mercury.' The letter was written from Riverside, California, on March 31, 1904. I need not read the first part of the letter but I shall quote this portion which refers to the Minister of Agriculture :

In an agricultural way you lave gained enormously over this country. Speaking recently with one of the ablest men who are taking care of our agricultural and horticultural interests at Washington I was really pleased to have him say that the Department of Agriculture in Canada was far in advance of that in this country.

Surely this does not look much as if we had inefficient men at the head of affairs here. I am proud to say, I am proud to know that the farmers of this country are progressing and when the day comes for the farmers to give their verdict I have no doubt in my own mind that the verdict will be that the present government shall be returned and that the Minister of Agriculture will be maintained in his position. Then the farmers will go on progressing at the same rate as they have done for the last six or seven years.

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CON

Ernest D'Israeli Smith

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. E. D. SMITH.

I would not have taken any part in this discussion were it not that a remark made by the hon. member for West Huron (Mr. Holmes) caused me to look at the record of that chicken fattening station of which he seems to feel so proud, and criticism of which he seems to think would be of no assistance to his opponents in his own riding. I think it is a function of the government to make experiments and we do not expect the result of the experiments in each case to be a profit, but in this experimental station at Holmesville-and I believe the same thing is true of all the chicken fattening stations-the proceeds of the sales do not pay for the feed and the cost of the chickens bought, and surely the feed cannot be charged up to experimenting. Surely if they are feeding these chickens on new improved scientific principles they should be able to sell the chickens for

the amount which the feed cost and the cost of the purchased chickens, especially when we are informed that they are sold at an advanced price, at a price 2 to 4 cents more than the ordinary price. In connection with this Holmesville fattening station the only item outside of feed and purchased fowls which I will take into account are $13.40 for coal oil and $28.40 for plucking the chickens. There are $9.85 for cold storage and all the rest is for feed and the cost of the chickens, making the total cost $902.85. In this not a single dollar is taken into account for labour, but no farmer or any one else could fatten chickens without some labour.

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LIB

Robert Holmes

Liberal

Mr. HOLMES.

In the Auditor General's Report for last year, the hon. member will find that there is an expenditure of over $1,000 for buildings.

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CON

Ernest D'Israeli Smith

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. E. D. SMITH.

I am not taking one single cent of that into account. If the hon. gentleman had listened he would have heard me state that I did not take into account a single cent except the cost of chickens and the feed. I did not count in a cent for labour or for sundries although there is an item of $100 charged for sundries. The total cost for feed, chickens bought and the three small items mentioned about which there can be do difference of opinion as to the propriety of the charge is $902.85 and the receipts from the sales last year were $564.57 leaving a deficit of $338.28, although we are counting nothing but the cost of the feed and the chickens themselves and the minor items before mentioned.

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CON

George Taylor (Chief Opposition Whip; Whip of the Conservative Party (1867-1942))

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. TAYLOR.

What did the chickens sell for ?

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CON

Ernest D'Israeli Smith

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. E. D. SMITH.

I am not so much surprised at the loss when we think of the sale price. I find in the Auditor General's Report at page D-112 the statement that 730 chickens weighing 2,617 pounds sold for $97.92, an average of 3J cents a pound though the minister and the member for West Huron (Mr. Holmes) both stated these government fattened chickens sell at verv high prices-about 10 cents per pound. If the hon. member for West Huron told his constituents the whole truth I am afaid he might not find them so well pleased with the chicken fattening stations. I turn to another sale of poultry from the Bienville chicken fattening station and I find that eleven cases containing 550 pounds sold for $40.26 or 7Jr cents per pound so that all the government fattened chickens do not bring 10 cents a pound. I have no word to say in condemnation of experimental stations. I do not expect them to pay but I do say there is no reason why the amount brought for these chickens should not pay for the cost of the food and the cost of the chickens originally if the thing is conducted properly.

Amendment (Mr. Taylor) negatived on division.

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LIB

Aaron Abel Wright

Liberal

Mr. WRIGHT.

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Motion agreed to, and House went into Committee of Sufiply. Dominion lands-amount required to pay accounts in connection with the late J. E. Mailhoit's survey, $245.66.


LIB

Clifford Sifton (Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Hon. CLIFFORD SIFTON (Minister o£ the Interior).

This surveyor died while the survey was in progress and there were certain accounts to he paid.

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IND

William Findlay Maclean

Independent Conservative

Mr. MACLEAN.

I would like to ask the hon. minister whether he has ever considered the idea of buying out the lands of the Hudson's Bay Company and those of the Canadian Pacific Railway ?

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LIB

Clifford Sifton (Minister of the Interior; Superintendent-General of Indian Affairs)

Liberal

Mr. SIFTON.

The question has never been considered.

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July 20, 1904