The reason for the difference my hon. friend speaks of is that for the purposes of trade it is found necessary to handle the grain on grade instead of on sample. Grain is bought on sample, but it is sold on grade; it is bought from the farmer on sample, but it reaches the consumer on grade. There is a point of change between the conditions of handling by sample and handling by grade. The consensus of opinion is that that point of change seems conveniently located at Winnipeg. There must be a change somewhere, and the consensus of opinion is that the change should occur at one point, and not at interlocking points. The opinion is that Winnipeg is the point at which it is best for everybody that the change from sample to grade should take plate. Generally speaking, the grain comes together at a certain point, and there it is inspected. Therefore, as the conditions between the purchasing and handling on sample and the purchasing and handling on grade, change at Winnipeg, it is thought advisable that the provisions which are intended to preserve the identity of the grain from Winnipeg east, should not apply to Winnipeg or points west, Winnipeg being the point of the assemblage of the grade and the point of inspection.
I am glad that the minister has an open mind on the subject. The fact is that most of the grain now shipped from the west is not inspected at Winnipeg at all. Another large quantity comes into the Winnipeg yards, and under this Bill the owner may hold it for twenty-four hours to be sold on sample, if he wishes. If he does not order it into the elevators or on to some siding for handling, it goes on. That grain is not in some cases graded at Winnipeg, grain is not in all cases inspected at Winnipeg except that which comes from the elevator. This clause prepares the way for selling on sample, and change of conditions, and change of ownership at Winnipeg. I venture to say that perhaps 90 per cent of the grain changes its ownership before it reaches Winnipeg. When it comes to Winnipeg it is not the grain of the farmer, except in very few instances; it is the grain of the grain dealer, and the grain dealers through this Bill say: We want the privilege of taking it into the elevator and advancing its grade, advancing it from No. 2 Northern to No 1. We want the authority of mixing it, of grading it, but we will not allow anybody else to do so. We stipulate by law that they shall not do it at the public, general or transfer elevators or in the Dominion of Canada. It is, I submit, unfair to pass such legislation.
My hon. friend would give the impression that the bulk of the wheat shipped from points west of Winnipeg goes into elevators in Winnipeg before it is graded. I am satisfied that not more that one per cent is thus treated ; the great bulk is shipped from the different stations west of Winnipeg, inspected and graded on its way through Winnipeg and goes into the terminal elevator at Port Arthur.
My honoured friend is mistaken, even if he is from the west. I consulted Inspector Horn and his statement was that no grain was inspected before going into the Winnipeg elevators so the Winnipeg inspection of that grain is inspection after the grain has been cleaned. I I offer no objections to the sample market or anything else at Winnipeg but I do say : Tlease take your hand off our throat, we do not want to be treated differently from Winnipeg.
You said it was done in the interest of the grain men. It is true that grain is put into elevators in Winnipeg without inspection, cleaned, possibly mixed to some extent, and then graded out of the elevator. The object of this amendment, as I understand, is that the farmer shall have the privilege of detaining his car in Winnipeg for twenty-four hours, in order that he may, if possible, sell it on sample, on its intrinsic merits, to get any possible advantage from its being above the average of its grade. I do not think it will be satisfactory to have grain inspection at Port Arthur but that is a matter for the House to decide.
I was not discussing the detention of the car but subsection 8 which
prohibits the mixing of grain in a public terminal elevator, or an eastern transfer elevator. If it is good legislation for the terminal elevators and the eastern transfer elevators, it should be good legislation at Winnipeg. I would like someone to show me how the farmer is to be benefited by this. It is amazing to me how many men from Winnipeg and its vicinity have a deep affection for the farmer ; all this legislation is for his benefit
Then all I can say is the Lord help the farmer. This is clearly a provision not for the benefit of the farmer but for the benefit of the gentleman who manipulate matters in the grain business in Winnipeg, because it is a provision which is prohibitory against everybody else. I submit that the section should be altered to include all elevators, or at least the Winnipeg and St. Boniface elevators, the terminal elevators and the eastern transfer elevators.
I would like to ask the minister what were the views of the delegation of the Grain Growers' Association upon that particular point. He was at the conference with them and it is quite obvious that the hon. member for Rainy River has not been.
No doubt you did, as I can see by the fight that you are putting up. I rather appreciate the position you are taking now and I have some sympathy with your argument. Whether it would be wise to adopt it or not I am not prepared to say, but it does seem there is a discrimination against the elevators at Port Arthur. I can understand that grain going down by way of the back lane, by way of Morris, coming from county elevators, loading platforms and farmers farms, would not be treated the same as other grain passing through Winnipeg, and the question occurs as to why the shippers of that grain should not have the same privilege at Port Arthur and Fort William as the farmers whose grain goes through the city of Winnipeg. There is some force in the hon. gentleman's argument and I would like an explanation along that line. Whether it would be wise to extend the privilege as far east as Fort William and Port Arthur I am not prepared to say at the present time, not having had the opportunity of considering the question in the same way that the hon. gentlemen opposite have had. What are the views of Mr. McKenzie and Mr. Langley upon that point?