September 18, 1917

CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

What advantage does the hon. gentleman find in shipping potatoes to Boston? Is there an increased price to any extent, and what is it?

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL:

There is an increased price and an increased market. Last year' potatoes reached an exorbitant, outrageous price.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

But in an average year?

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. OARVELL:

I do not take last year as a guide, because when farmers are getting $6 or $7 a barrel for potatoes they have no cause to complain of tariff regulations or regulations of any other kind. I am dismissing that from my argument, and I am trying to discuss the matter under ordinary conditions.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

William Wright

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. WRIGHT:

What is the difference in quantity and value between the potatoes exported from Canada to the United States and the potatoes imported from the United States into Canada?

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL:

It is very great. Take the year ended March, 1917, and the first five months of this year. During that period we imported from the United States 1,000,000 Ibushels, and we exported to the United States about 2,800,000 'bushels. You would have to add to that, if you want to get a real understanding of what the difference would be in case the duty were removed, the quantity of potatoes which we sent to Cuba and which would amount to 1,150,000 bushels. I am speaking in round figures. Therefore, the quantity of our export to the United States would be easily four times the quantity of our imports.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

William Wright

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. WRIGHT:

That would be for last year, not for an average year.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL:

I am taking last year

and the first five months of this year. Prior to 1916 very few of these were sent to the United States, because after the passing of the Underwood tariff, under which potatoes were practically free-there was only a ten per cent ad valorem duty-certain very shrewd Yankees who live about forty or fifty miles from my home conceived the idea of throwing mud at the Canadian potatoes by claiming that they were afflicted with a disease known as powdery scab. It was all a myth; there never .was any powdery scab, but just the ordinary scab that we have seen on potatoes ever since we were

children. But these gentlemen scared their Government and our Government and everybody else, and I think I am safe in saying that it cost this Government almost $100,000 to fight the disease. Regulations and a rigid inspection were put in force and it was almost imposible for us to ship our potatoes across the line. But last year, when the United States wanted our potatoes, they did 'not bother very much about powdery scab or about regulations ana inspection. They wanted our potatoes' and were glad to get them. So last year would be the first in a great many years when trade flowed freely without any unnatural barriers. I admit that the valuation is very, very far in excess of what the same volume of business would amount to in an ordinary year.

Coming back to the question put by the Minister of Agriculture, I stated that according to the reports- furnished by the department practically a million bushels of potatoes were imported in the two years I have been discussing. We exported in the same period to the United States about

2,800,000 bushels, and to Cuba 1,500,000 bushels. Altogether we exported practically

4,000,000 bushels. So far as I know, the regulations regarding powdery scab and inspection and all that sort of thing are not being adhered to at the present time, and trade flows as freely as it naturally can, except for the duty. The United States customs authorities fix an arbitrary figure in arriving at the valuation. As I understand it, they do not take the invoice price of each carload of potatoes, but place an arbitrary figure upon potatoes from a certain area. At the present time that arbitrary figure for the Maritime Provinces is $3 a barrel, Actually our farmers are only getting $2 a barrel. The result is that under their method of assessing the duty is increased by fifty per cent,. With that exception, .trade is flowing as ,it naturally would under ordinary conditions.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY :

What justification is there for them doing that?

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL:

I am not complaining. It is a regulation of the United States Government, and I suppose they have their own reasons for it. I do not mean for a moment to -say that they are doing it to be unneighbourly, or anything of that kind.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

What does our Government do in return?

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL:

I do not know. I only happen to know this because a few days ago

I received a letter from an organization in New Brunswick, known as the New Brunswick Potato Exchange, who are really the greatest potato dealers in Canada, pointing this out to me, and wanting to 10 p.m. know if something could not be done to remedy it. The result of this method of determining the duty by the United States is that we pay a great deal more than we really should. *

I would not attempt to say what the surplus in the United States will be this year, but I know it will be very large. As regards Canada, I have been told by gentlemen interested in the business that, without taking the Maritime Provinces at all, the surplus in Canada will be six or seven million bushels. If that toe true, it is perfectly safe to say that we shall have a surplus in Canada of at least 10,000,000 bushels, because in the maritime province alone I think we shall have a surplus of about

5.000. 000 or 6,000,000 'bushels. So if I am right in the information I have received- and if I am not the minister can correct me-the surplus this year will be easily

10.000. 000 bushels. In other years, when there has been a shortage of potatoes in Quebec and Ontario, we have been able to ship out potatoes there, tout when there is no shortage in Quebec and Ontario, we have no market for- our potatoes except the United States. Let me give the House an illustration of what that means. In the spring of 1915, there were, I think I am safe in saying, from half a million to a million bushels of potatoes sold in New Brunswick at 15 cents a bushel, and tens of thousands of bushels were thrown on the dump because there was not stock enough to eat them up. The reason for this condition was that there was no demand for potatoes in Quebec and Ontario, and we were debarred by the regulations from sending our potatoes to the United States. The House can readily see the importance of having the United States -market open to us. If the provinces of Quebec and Ontario want potatoes, we have them for them, but if they do not want them, unless we can sell to the United States or Cuba, we have absolutely no market and are in exactly the same position we were in in the spring of 1915.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

Hugh Boulton Morphy

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. MORPHY:

Do the farmers of New-Brunswick make potatoes their -sole production?

M. OARVELI.: I am sorry to say that

they do, to -a greater extent than they ought to. I know for a fact that one of my con-

stituents made $20,000-and this was clear profit-from forty acres of land.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

Adelbert Edward Hanna

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. HANNA:

That was an exception.

Mr. CitRVELL: I admit that if the price of potatoes was always the same as last year's price, I would not be arguing for a remission of duty or anything else,- but would be asking the Food Controller to "get busy as quickly as he could. But this year, as I said before, there is an enormous surplus in Ontario and in the West and in the East, and unless we have access to the United States market we cannot -sell our product. Fortunately, we have access now, but we are compelled to pay ten per cent duty. As I pointed out it really means 15 per cent because of the way the value is assessed. If bon. gentlemen will look at the United States tariff of 1913 they will find the free list starting at item 387. Item 581, page 54, deals with potatoes, and is as follows:

5S1. Potatoes, and potatoes dried, desiccated, or otherwise prepared, not specially provided for In this section: provided that any of the foregoing specified articles shall be subject to a duty of ten per centum ad valorem when imported directly or indirectly from a country, dependency, or rather subdivision of government which imposes a duty on such articles imported from the United States.

In other words, potatoes are free unless they come from a country which imposes a duty upon potatoes coming from- the United States, in- which case the duty is ten per -cent ad valorem. The section of the United *States tariff dealing with wheat, item 644, is as follows: ,

644. Wheat, wheat flour, semolina, and other wheat products, not specially provided for in this section: provided that wheat shall be subject to a duty of 10 cents per bushel, that wheat flour shall be subject to a duty of 45 cents per barrel of 196 pounds, and semolina and other products of wheat, not specially provided for in this section, ten per centum ad valorem when imported directly or indirectly fro.m a country, dependency, or other subdivision of government which imposes a duty on wheat or wheat flour or semolina imported from the United States.

It will be seen, therefore, that the latter part of these two clauses are identical. The law was made exactly the same regarding wheat, wheat products, semolina, and potatoes. Under the W-ar Measures Act, - as hon. members are well aware, during the recess of the present session of Parliament, and only three or four days before Parliament re-assem-bled, the Government passed an Order in Council placing wheat, wheat flour, and semolina on the free list. I ishall not go into that -question again, because

it has already been discussed in the House. At the same 'time I think I have .a right to argue, and I am sure no hon. gentleman will disagree with me, that having ithe right to do-this with wheat and wheat products, they have the same right with regard to potatoes. Therefore, it comes down to a question of policy. The law is there and the machinery is there. All it needs is a simple Order in Council which may be passed in ten minutes at any time, and potatoes can be made free.

If they are made free coming into Canada, we can send our surplus product into the United States free of duty. As I pointed out during the last year and a half this has meant a tax paid by the people of my province, -and very largely of my constituency, amounting to about half a million dollars. This year we [DOT]shall be in a much worse shape than we were last year, because we must sell our potatoes to the United States and Cuba, as there is no ouher market for us. What I want the Government to do, and what in my judgment they should do, as a matter of fair-handed justice is: treat us the same as they treated the West, pass an Order in Council removing the duty on potatoes coming into Canada, ard automatically you will remove the duty on potatoes going into the United States from Canada. Then, if another year the 'Government, whoever they may be, feel that conditions have changed and that it is not in the best interests of the country to retain potatoes on the free list, all they have to do is to repeal the Order in Council and the law comes back automatically to what it is at the present time. I am not asking the House or the Government to amend the Tariff Act. I am simply asking that as a measure of justice to my constituents during the present season-and the crop is being harvested now- an Order in Council be passed, placing us in >a position to send our product to our only market, and T&aliae therefore the best price available. I think that with the quantity of potatoes in the Maritime Provinces to-day, which must be sent to the United States and Cuba-which for the purpose of my argument is the same thing- it will mean at least $400,000 that we would save which otherwise will have to go into the coffers of the United States. This is a lot of money, and means a great deal to the farmers of eastern Canada.

I do not think I have anything further to say upon the subject. I have tried to discuss it in a fair, non-partisan and business-like manner. I have pointed out the conditions existing, I have pointed out the

law as -it is, and lindicated the remedy. I simply ask the Government to give us the remedy for the present year. You need not change the Tariff Act. I sincerely hope the Government will take these representations into consideration, not within the next month or six weeks, but immediately, and will pass the necessary Order in -Council so -that our people may get the best price possible for their product. We shall have no market in Ontario, in Quebec, or anywhere else except in- the United States and -Cuba, barring, of course, a few thousand bushels-a mere bagatelle-that go to the West Indies.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

John Wesley Edwards

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. J. W. EDWARDS (Frontenac):

Last year when the potato crop became a somewhat serious question in the province of Ontario, I obtained some figures in regard to the production of that very important vegetable, which figures I would like to submit for the consideration of the House. Potatoes -are entirely different from wheat. What I mean by that is I do not think the hon. member for Carleton (Mr. Carvell) is quite logical in saying that inasmuch as the Government removed the duty from wheat and wheat products, they should for the same reason remove the duty on potatoes. Wheat will keep from one year to the next; potatoes must, practically speaking, be disposed of in the year they are grown; they will not keep indefinitely. The price of wheat is not fixed in Canada, hut in Great Britain. This is not the case with potatoes, the price of which is regulated by the supply on this side of the Atlantic. I think my hon. friend also -makes a mistake in assuming that the only market the Maritime Provinces will have for their potatoes is in the United States and Cuba. I think he is mistaken in assuming they will have a market for their surplus potatoes in the United 'States, Let us look at the figures of tbe production of this v-ery important article for the years 1915 and 1916, and compare the production in those two years.

In 1915 the total yield of potatoes in Canada was 62,604,000 bushels. In 1916 it was only 61,128,000 bushels, or a decrease of

1.476.000 bushels. Let us see where that shoitage took place. It did not take place in the Maritime Provinces. Prince Edward Island produced 2,828,000 bushels more in 1916 than in 1915; Nova Scotia produced

2.185.000 bushels more than in 1915; and New Brunswick 1,716,000 bushels more than in 1915. That is to say, the Maritime Provinces in 1916 showed an increased production over 1915 of 6,729,000 bushels of potatoes. The province of Ontario, how-

ever, in 1916 showed a shortage of 6,250,000 bushels from the production of the previous year; while Quebec showed a shortage of

2.800.000 bushels. Thus the shortage in Ontario and Quebec more than overbalanced the increased production in the three Maritime provinces. Under normal conditions Quebec and Ontario should have supplied a market for the over-production of the Maritime Provinces. Let us look at the production in the West. Manitoba showed an increased production in 1916 over 1915 of

1.600.000 bushels, and Saskatchewan an increase of 850,000 bushels, while Alberta showed a shortage of 500,000 bushels and British Columbia a shortage of 1,100,000 bushels, as compared with the previous year. In other words, Ontario and Quebec together showed a decrease from the previous year's production of over 9,000,000 bushels; the western provinces showed an increase over the production of the previous year of 850,000 bushels; while the Maritime Provinces showed an increase of 6,729,000 bushels. We were in the position, in Ontario, and in Quebec to a lesser extent, of having a very great shortage in a very important crop. Ordinarily we would have been helped out in Ontario by the Quebec crop, which as a rule is quite large. We did not have an opportunity to bring potatoes from the western provinces, although they showed, some increase.

The United States in 1916 showed a shortage of 75,000,000 bushels from the previous year. There seemed to be a general shortage on this continent except in the Maritime Provinces and one or two western provinces. In England there was a shortage of 13,250,000 bushels; in Ireland, a great potato producing country, a shortage of over 47,000,000 bushels; and in Scotland a shortage of over 6,500,000 bushels; while the potato crop was also short in Italy and. Switzerland. Totalling the figures, we find a shortage in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom in 1916 as compared with that of 1915 of 153,000,000 bushels. Consequently for any surplus that we had in the western provinces or in the Maritime Provinces we had' a very serious competitor in the United States. There was a shortage throughout the United States, and consequently a demand for potatoes from any source. Taking one year with another, the nineteen northern states, the principal potato producing states of the Union, produce over 60 per cent of the crop of potatoes in the United States. But they fell away below the average in 1916-some 44 per

cent-and more than 50 per cent below the average of the previous five years.

Let us consider this for a moment. The situation in Ontario last fall was this: There was a great shortage of potatoes here and the prices went up rapidly. I could have bought all the potatoes I wanted about potato digging time in the fall for $2 a bag. But, like every person else, I thought that price was pretty high; it was a great d al higher than we had been accustomed to paying in Ontario, and people held back and did not put in a supply. The cold weather came on and we could not bring potatoes from the Maritime Provinces or from the West without risk of frost and the price went up out of sight. That explains the high price of potatoes in Ontario ana Quebec last year.

My hon. friend seems to think- and I do not wish to question his sincerity in the matter-that the solution of the difficulty, so far as the Maritime Provinces ate concerned, is the removal of duty so that potatoes may pass readily from the United States into Canada or from Canada intr the United States. I do not agree in that conclusion. I recognize that the potato crop in the Maritime Provinces is a very important crop, and I suppose that if the potato growers in the Maritime Provinces were making an average of $500 an acre, ot a clear profit of $20,000 on every forty acres of potatoes, they would not do much grumbling whether they had a duty or not. I do not suppose the hon. member wants us to infer that they are making that on the average. I will admit that in the ordinary year there will be little prospect of Maritime Province potatoes coming in any great quantity into the province of Quebec.

There will be a greater market in Ontario than in Quebec. I know that Maritime Province potatoes have come into Ontario for years and years, I think to a larger extent than into Quebec, because we raise less potatoes in Ontario than they do in Quebec.' But, in view of the fact that they have just as good soil for raising potatoes in the United States as we have in Canada, and that the principal potato producing states in the Union are the Northern States, which produce over 60 per cent of the total output of that country, taking one year with another, where is there going to be any relief? If we happen to have a shortage in Ontario and Quebec, as we had last year, there will be just as good a market in Ontario and Quebec for Maritime Province potatoes as in the United States. If there happens to be a shortage in the United

States, potatoes will go that way. On the other .hand, in the United States, where, taking one year with the other, they have invariably a very large surplus-up in the millions of bushels-if the barriers are taken down, the potatoes will go from the United States into the Maritime Provinces, or other provinces of Canada, where ordinarily the Maritime Provinces would be looking for a market.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Edward Mortimer Macdonald

Liberal

Mr. MACDONALD:

We raise a surplus of potatoes in the Maritime Provinces.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL:

It would be "carrying coals to Newcastle."

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
CON

John Wesley Edwards

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. EDWARDS:

If you say there will be no market fot United States in the Maritime Provinces because you have more than you require, I say that, taking one year with another, the United States have more than they require for their own use, and taking potatoes to the United States will be "carrying coals to Newcastle." If the argument holds in one case it will hold good in the other. If the production of potatoes in the United States is chiefly confined to the Northern States, you have your competitors right at your door. Taking one year with another, there is a large surplus of potatoes in the United States. They are looking for a market. They ship their potatoes to ail parts of the world, wherever they can find a market for them The position is somewhat similar in regard to hay. You will see a great difference in the price of hay, sometimes a dollar or two a ton, within a distance of a hundred miles. There will be a remarkable difference in the quotations at Toronto and the quotations at Guelph. Locality cuts a bigger figure in fixing the price of potatoes than anything you can name. In various parts of Ontario the price of potatoes varies greatly. Potatoes were selling at $4 a bag in Kingston when you could buy all you wanted in Pembroke for $2.75 or $3 a bag, and Pembroke is only a short distance away. But they happened t< have a very good crop in that locality There will not be the relief the hon. gentleman anticipates from the removal of the duty.

The hon. gentleman may say "what objection have you? If it is not going to be much of a relief it is not going to be much of a damage." That is a fair argument, but my main objection is a question of principle. I think if we accede to the demand from one section of the country, for instance from the Maritime Provinces, in regard to potatoes, another section of the country will make a demand in regard to some product which abounds in that section. I do not think that is a good practice to follow. I maintain that we have to take into consideration climatic conditions. The climate of this country and the climate of the country with which we have to deal have to be considered. Our farmers are handicapped in this time of world competition because we compete with countries thousands of miles away which formerly we did not consider rivals. We must take into consideration the climate of Argentina, for instance, and the climate of certain parts of the United States, if we are going to be true to our own people. 1 say it is not a proper principle to enunciate that we should have free trade with this country, or free trade with that country. It might be all right, if conditions were alike in other respects, but the tariff is a means to a certain extent, of equalizing conditions which are rendered unequal because of a rigorous climate in one case and a mild climate in another. In Ontario and Quebec we have to provide against the frost, whereas our competitors to the south of us do not have that expense, by reason of the mildness of their climate. I do not think there will be anything like the relief the hon. member anticipates by making potatoes free, and I think it is introducing a dangerous principle.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

James Joseph Hughes

Liberal

Mr. HUGHES (Kings P.E.I.):

The hon. member for Carleton (Mr. Garvell) deserves a great deal of credit for bringing this question to the notice of the House and askina the Government to take some action immediately to relieve the situation in the Maritime' provinces. We in the Maritime provinces-and I speak more particularly for Prince Edward Island-did not feel the necessity for a market in the United States during the pa.st two years for our potatoes but conditions this year are such that there is practically no other market for the surplus product of the Maritime provinces. We either have to sell in the United States, or not sell at all, because potatoes are not wanted in Ontario, or in the western provinces, or in any part of Quebec. A small quantity may, and probably will, be wanted in Newfoundland, but only a small proportion of what we have to dispose of, and, therefore, the market of the United States is the only market we have in the universe.

There is a market in that- country for our surplus potatoes-not at a high price this

. year, but at some price, 'because 90,000,000 or 100,000,000 people consume an enormous quantity of potatoes. I believe that the crop in the United -States this year is estimated at about 420,000,000 bushels. The member for Carleton estimates-I think his estimate is low-that we shall have a surplus crop in Canada of 10,000,000 bushels. There will be a surplus crop of 6,000,000 or.

7,000,000 in the Maritime Provinces, 3,000,000 of which will be produced in Prince Edward Island. Of course, we can feed some of this surplus crop to the stock, but there is not enough stock to consume anything like the whole of it. The crop this year will be as good as that of last year, when we had a splendid market in Ontario, in some parts of Quebec and in the United States. Ontario seldom takes any considerable quantity of potatoes from the Maritime Provinces, at any rate from Prince Edward Island; ordinarily they produce almost enough for themselves. In order to produce potatoes or any other commodity successfully, a steady market is much more necessary than a market that may give a high price one year and an exceedingly low price the next two or three years. That is one reason why the market of the United States, so far as potatoes are concerned, is so valuable to the farmers of the Maritime Provinces. When the importing country is very short of the product imported and must get it at any price, the importer pays a large portion of the duty. But when conditions in a country like the United States are such as they are this year; when they have a large crop and do not find it necessary to import our potatoes, then the exporter pays the duty on potatoes sent into that country. Why is it that we can find a market in the United States for our surplus potatoes? Because of the fact that eight or ten million bushels of potatoes more or less will make no appreciable difference in a country which has a crop of over 400,000,000 bushels. The United States market will not be greatly affected by our surplus potatoes being sent into that country; therefore they can take our surplus produce, at some price.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink
LIB

Frank Broadstreet Carvell

Liberal

Mr. CARVELL:

And they are taking it.

Topic:   STATEMENT SHOWING THE IMPORTS AND EXPORTS OF POTATOES, BY COUNTRIES, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDED 31 MARCH, 1917, AND ALSO DURING THE FIVE MONTHS ENDED 31 AUGUST, 1917.
Permalink

September 18, 1917