May 14, 1928


Section agreed to. On section 3 Reasons for grading.


LIB

Charles Marcil

Liberal

The CHAIRMAN (Mr. Marcil):

This section has been amended by adding after the word "matter" in subsection 2 the words, "not naturally produced with the hay or straw."

Section as amended agreed to.

On section 4-Imported hay and straw, how to be graded.

Topic:   HAY AND STRAW INSPECTION ACT AMENDMENT
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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

What is the meaning of the words "applicable to hay grown in the province into which hay is imported"? The bill says that when straw imported into Canada is inspected, the inspection and grading has to be done in accordance with the provisions of this act, but in the case of hay there are these additional words, "applicable to hay

Hay Inspection Act

grown in the province into which hay is imported." There is no provision in this act dealing with specific regulations as regards one province more than another, and I should like to ask what is the purpose of these words.

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LIB

William Richard Motherwell (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. MOTHERWELL:

Under the old act there was a variation in grades in different parts of Canada; there would be an outstanding difference in the quality of the hay. The intention here is simply to recognize distinct grades for each province, where necessary. Dawn in the maritimes, for instance, in Nova Scotia, we have marsh hay, having peculiarities differing substantially from upland hay, although it is tame hay. In New Brunswick and in Prince Edward Island we have the regular order of hay. In Quebec it is largely timothy. In the prairies the hay has distinctive characteristics, and in Alberta it is largely alfalfa. The idea is to work out a system of grades that will take care of the peculiar characteristics of hay that we have throughout Canada.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

Are you going to establish grades by regulation?

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LIB

William Richard Motherwell (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. MOTHERWELL:

Under the advisory board.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

There is nothing in the act to indicate the minister's intention to do it according to regulations made under the act.

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LIB

William Richard Motherwell (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. MOTHERWELL:

We have power in the act to make regulations.

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IND

Alan Webster Neill

Independent

Mr. NEILL:

If it is to be done by regulations, reference ought to be made to the regulations in the act, but there is no reference here.

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LIB

William Richard Motherwell (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. MOTHERWELL:

If my hon. friend thinks that would make it any plainer-

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CON

Hugh Alexander Stewart

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. STEWART (Leeds):

If regulations are to be passed under the provisions of this act under which grades are to be established, surely the regulations should be mentioned in the provisions of the act.

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LIB

William Richard Motherwell (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. MOTHERWELL:

This section is no doubt capable of improvement to make it more lucid, but it is just as we have had it in the old act, although that may not be a good commendation. But I see my hon. friend's point. We have power, however, to act on the advice of the advisory board in the matter of establishing standards.

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LIB

Roch Lanctôt

Liberal

Mr. LANCTOT (Translation):

Mr. Chairman, I had the privilege of being present at the sittings of the committee on agriculture

which, some time ago, recommended the adoption of this bill. To-day, I wish to set forth the viewpoint of the province of Quebec, because in this country there are various qualities of hay. I wonder whether Alberta, among other provinces, grows really hay for commercial purposes. I rather think that this bill is especially introduced to please the farmers of Alberta, because there is a variety of other things in their hay. They made the sale of this hay legal, although they admitted that it contained wood and bones of animal carcases, etc.

As I stated, before the committee of agriculture, there are to-day all kinds of new machinery to take care of the hay crop, work which we old timers of Quebec used to do by hand. I am still in favour of grading the hay in the field after it has been mowed and raked separately; we do not gather it in hay-cocks to-day because we have hay loaders. Unfortunately, this makes the hay more difficult to grade. It is different with grain, which we can pass through the fanning-mill, and if necessary we pass it through two or three times so as to obtain grain suitable for seeding. The hay cannot be put through the same process. For instance, in one mording about 20 arpents of hay is cut on a piece of land measuring 15 arpents in length by li to 2 arpents in width; let us suppose that we have in succession a strip of pure clover, another of mixed clover, and a third of fine timothy; in my father's time all the timothy, the pure clover and the mixed clover were handled separately and also placed in different bays in our barns so that we had some fine, medium and ordinary hay. We therefore had a bay of fine hay, a bay of medium hay and a bay of ordinary hay. When it was taken into the bam we could separate the various qualities and we sold the hay according to its grading, Nos. 1, 2 or 3; who could grade the hay to-day while it is being pressed since it is all mixed? Grading is simply impossible. I have been a hay dealer for the last 36 years. I employ, to grade the hay, men with experience, as well qualified as any inspector of the Department of Agriculture. When I purchase 100 tons of hay from a farmer I send an expert; the latter examines two cars and grades them. He places in one car the best quality of hay and that of medium quality in one of the warehouses which we have here and there throughout the district where the hay is bought. If the hay was graded in the fields we could caution the farmer; and he would bring us

Dumping Duty-Mr. Anderson (Halton)

hay of good quality only and we would not be bothered with the kind of hay which we are apt to have in storage. In my own county the farmers bring me good hay, because I tell them to grade and separate it in the fields. I am aware that for a farmer who has very little hay to sell and but one barn, it is harder. However, when farmers have three or four barns at their disposal for hay, they can grade it better than inspectors and dealers. We, the dealers, together with our experts, grade it the best we can, yet the hay is mixed, it can be camouflaged but this does not often happen in a county where the dealer can warn the farmers and tell them to do the right thing. You know that the careful person is always in demand; he goes to the trouble of grading his hay and sells a better product. As a rule we pay him sufficiently to indemnify him for his trouble.

In regard to this measure and many others introduced by the Department of Agriculture, we find it is overdone and it is very annoying to have so many acts in regard to every thing and which have no meaning.

As to the province of Quebec which grows a great deal of both timothy and other hay of good quality, I think that the expert, who championed the bill before the committee of Agriculture (Mr. Clarke), should allow the old dealers to carry on without troubling them. We can assure him that the experts of the Department of Agriculture cannot do any better than we can.

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LIB

William Richard Motherwell (Minister of Agriculture)

Liberal

Mr. MOTHERWELL:

To do full justice

to the observations of my hon. friend (Mr. Lanctot) I shall have to wait until they are translated, which will not be until to-morrow. Therefore I move that the committee rise and report progress, and ask leave to sit again.

Progress reported.

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SUPPLY-DUMPING DUTY


Hon. ERNEST LAPOINTE (Minister of Justice) moved that the house go into committee of supply.


CON

Robert King Anderson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. R. K. ANDERSON (Halton):

Mr. Speaker, I rise to move an amendment to the motion to go into supply, similar to the amendment that was moved last Tuesday by the hon. member for Victoria (Mr. Tolmie). The subject matter of his amendment was not then pronounced upon by the house, the debate being concluded under the eleven o'clock rule while I was speaking, and consequently I adjourned the debate.

The amendment is being moved again for the purpose of once more bringing to the

attention of the government and the country a matter of considerable importance owing to imports of agricultural products at certain seasons of the year to such an extent as to be injurious to the producers of similar products in the Dominion. These importations affect particularly the farming classes in the provinces of Ontario, British Columbia, Quebec and Nova Scotia, and relate to fruits and vegetables and poultry products It will be generally agreed that these may be described as necessaries of life, and are essential to the health of our people, particularly fruit and vegetables when they first come on the market. The sale of the home grown product is injuriously affected by the importation of similar products produced in the United States under conditions that make it impossible for our producers to sell their products at a comparable price. As I have said, fruits are essential to the health of our people, particularly in the summer time; but there are certain seasons of the year when fruits are still more essential to the health of the people of the United States. At those seasons the producers in the United States have a surplus for export, and they dump that surplus into Canada, where it is sold practically to cover the cost of transportation.

Last Tuesday I was interrupted by the adjournment of the house before I could complete my remarks regarding the extent and importance of this industry to Canada and point out the necessity of preserving our home market for Canadian producers. No one will contradict the statement that the home market is the best market for the producers of these particular products. Members of the delegation that interviewed the Prime Minister (Mr. Mackenzie King) a short time ago claimed-and they ought to know what they were talking about

that Canadian-grown fruit and vegetables are the cheapest that the Canadian consumer can buy. All the delegates asked for was that they might be protected against abnormal competition in their home market, and undoubtedly when the surplus fruit and vegetable products of another country are being dumped here the competition is abnormal. The same thing applies to poultry and particularly to eggs, and if the producers of these commodities in Canada are capable of supplying adequately the demands of the Canadian people they should be protected from the imports of the surplus of similar products of other countries.

The delegation which waited upon the government two or three weeks ago was a large body representative of these two particular industries; they came from every

2984 COMMONS

Dumping Duty-Mr. Anderson (Halton)

part of Canada, from the Pacific to the Atlantic. They were here and they presented their case in a very forcible and impressive manner. They stated on that occasion that they would be perfectly willing to accept a seasonal tariff which would enable them to have their own market at that season of the year when their products were available for the home consumer. That surely was a very reasonable request and one which the government could scarcely deny. If they had been asking for a high tariff the year round, to keep out similar products from other countries when they could not be supplied at home, the case would have been different. The Prime Minister, in his speech a week ago, made this observation, as reported at page 2813 of Hansard:

The members of that delegation, for the most part, came here under the impression that the power just referred to had been taken away from the administration.

I quote the Prime Minister in this regard merely to assure him that the delegation had no misunderstanding as regards what they were asking fur. They knew perfectly well that the power had not been taken away from the administration to afford them assistance in connection with the dumping duty; they knew that the dumping clause in the Customs Act had not been repealed. But they did know that the order in cofuncil authorizing the Minister of National Revenue to fix the fair market price of articles coming into Canada had been rescinded. There was no misunderstanding on that point.

The hon. member for Rosetown (Mr. Evans) opposed the dumping clause on the ground-and he quoted figures-that the application of the clause increased prices in Canada. He instanced particularly peaches and raspberries. He claimed that the clause increased the prices of peaches in the western provinces from two to three hundred per cent over the prices that obtained in those years when the dumping clause was not invoked. I have in my hand a statement showing the prices of peaches in various parts of Canada for the years from 1923 to 1927, and I shall quote from it in order to show how erroneous were the statements made by the hon. member for Rosetown. We will take Calgary, for example, a city in the prairies

and I fancy the hon. member was referring particularly to prices in the prairie provinces. The following comparison speaks for itself:

Calgary . Regina

1923

$1 60 per box $1 50 per box1924

2 08 1 951925

1 751926

1 50 1 581927

1 78 1 75

It will be remembered that the order in council empowering the Minister of National Revenue to place a valuation on these articles when imported was passed in July, 1926. In that year peaches in Calgary were $1.50, ten cents below what they were there in 1923, when there was no dumping duty invoked; while in Regina it was $1.58, or eight cents above what they were in that city in 1923. In 1927 peaches sold in Calgary at $1.78, slightly above what they were in 1923, but considerably below the price obtained in 1924, when there was no dumping clause; because in 1924 they were $2.08. And in Regina, in 1927, the price was $1.75 as against $1.95 in 1924. This shows that even in the prairie provinces the invoking of the dumping clause did not increase the prices of these articles.

As regards the importance of these industries I want to quote a few figures from the Bureau of Statistics showing the amount of money spent by the people of this Dominion in these commodities and also the Canadian production in one year. We will take fruits and vegetables. In 1922 this industry produced in Canada $55,000,000 worth of fruits and vegetables as compared with $46,025,000 in 1927. That point was stressed by one of the delegates from Ontario, Mr. Fisher, who pointed out that because of competition from the United States the fruit and vegetable industry was being injured particularly in Ontario, but in the Dominion at large as well.

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LIB
CON

Robert King Anderson

Conservative (1867-1942)

Mr. ANDERSON (Halton):

In 1922

Canada produced-this is home production- $55,000,000 worth of fruit and vegetables as against $46,000,000 in 1927, or a decrease of about $9,000,000. That point, I was saying, was stressed by some of the delegates, 'who pointed out that the industry in Canada was declining because of insufficient support from our fiscal policy. In 1923 the production in Canada was $58,000,000 as against $43,000,000 in 1926; in 1924, it was $44,000,000; in 1925, $48,000,000; and in 1926, as I said, $43,000,000. This shows a steady decline in the production of fruits and vegetables in Canada.

It is well known that this country can produce fruits and vegetables equal to and better than those of most other countries, and there is therefore no reason why the Canadian industry should not be flourishing. I would suggest to hon. members from the prairies that they go to Toronto and motor through the Niagara peninsula. If they do,

Dumping Duty-Mr. Anderson (Halton)

I can assure them that they will see one of the most beautiful districts in this or any other country in the world; if they go towards the end of this week they will find it a most beautiful spot. When, the peach and cherry trees are in full bloom that section of the country is a veritable garden of Eden. The market gardeners there are fairly prosperous, but they could be made much more so. And that is only one of the sections of the country where this condition prevails. Certainly it would be a calamity and a tragedy if any policy initiated by this parliament should jeopardize that particular industry.

Then we come to poultry and eggs. I think the great importance of these products is not fully realized by many people in this country. In 1922 the production of poultry and eggs was valued at $62,850,000, in 1923 at $62,370,000, in 1924 at $65,084,000 and in 1927 at $97,937,000. That is a very large amount of revenue to be derived from poultry and eggs. It has been stated that this industry brings more money to the people of this country than our great fishing industry. In 1927 the total revenue from fruits, vegetables, poultry and eggs amounted to $143,962,000. Not only have we a splendid market in Canada for our poultry and eggs, but I would remind the house that in England alone we have a market for two and a half billion eggs each year. England consumes annually about five and a half billion eggs, and produces only about one-half that number. Over six hundred million eggs are imported from the dominions, the remaining coming from all over the world, so we have a large market in that country. The hen is sometimes looked upon as the humblest of the farm stock, yet it has been stated that poultry raising is the only industry which always shows a profit under normal conditions. For these reasons I think the government should seriously consider reintroducing the dumping clause.

Reverting to the question of fruits and vegetables, I have already said that five provinces are interested in this industry, their production being as follows:

Province and Total TotalDescription Year Quantity Valueova Scotia- bbl. Apples . 1926 927,370 $2,411,1621927 950,000 Bush. 2,850,000Pears . 1926 9,000 16,6501927 13,500 23,625qts. Strawberries. . . 1926 510,000 71,4001927 450,000 63,000Province and Total TotalDescription Year Quantity ValueNova Scotia.-Con. Raspberries. .. 1926 22,500 4,0501927 21,700 4,340Other berries .. 1926 80,000 10,400

New Brunswick

1927 90,000 bbl. 12,600Apples 1926 30,000 97,5001927 28,000 qts. 98,000Strawberries .. 1926 750,000 90.0001927 1,000,000 130.000Raspberries. .. 1926 40,000 6,8001927 35,000 6.300Other berries . . 1926 200,000 26,000Quebec- 1927 225,000 bbl. 27,000Apples 1926 111,600 474,3001927 104,600 qts. 481,160Strawberries .. 1926 2,000,000 280,000Ontario- 1927 1,910,500 bbl. 248,365Apples 1926 573.600 1,720,8001927 673,500 bush 2,188,875Pears 1926 114,240 222,7681927 211,300 390,905Plums and primes .. .. 1926 173.800 225,9401927 157,100 282,780Peaches 1926 158,700 449,1211927 306,180 918,540Cherries 1926 110.000 256,3001927 173,000 qts. 534,570Strawberries .. 1926 3,500,000 455,0001927 2,644.000 370,160Raspberries. .. 1926 1,200,000 204,0001927 2,304,000 368,640Other berries .. 1926 950,000 114,0001927 1,017,000 lbs. 183,060Grapes 1926 24.000.000 720,000British Columbia- 1927 34,560,000 bbl. 1,382,400Apples 1926 1.311.800 4.984.4001927 1,060,900 Bush. 4,667,960Pears 1926 143,200 236,2801927 110,800 299.160Plums and prunes 1926 173,000 224,9001927 120.050 342,142Peaches 1926 79,250 154,5371927 43,900 127.310Apricots 1926 56.650 127.4621927 17.300 64.875Cherries 1926 91,640 320.7401927 29,510 qts. 162,305Strawberries. . . 1926 2,979.000 506.4301927 4,202,000 588,280Raspberries. . . 1926 3,482,000 487,4801927 3,028,000 393,640Other berries .. 1926 2,965,000 326,1501927 2,296,000 206,640

These figures will show that this industry is scattered all over the Dominion, that it produces a considerable revenue for the Dominion and affords a living for a large number of people. The delegation which came to Ottawa some weeks ago to interview the government in this regard was composed of

2986 COMMONS

Dumping Duty-Mr. Anderson (Halton)

250 people, who claimed to represent 150,000 fruit, vegetable and poultry producers in Canada. Allowing five persons to a family, that delegation represented well over half a million people who make their living through this industry. Surely it would be proper to make every possible effort to foster a home industry of this kind; it is not in the interests of Canada or any other country to import articles or products which can be supplied by the domestic producer. We should conserve our markets for our own people, to induce our people to take up these industries and to induce people to come to Canada from other countries and carry on this line of work. If we give the necessary assistance we can easily bring about that result, because we have the climate and the soil conditions which are favourable to this branch of agriculture, while nowhere in the world can we find better conditions for the production of eggs and poultry. The people of the prairie provinces should be interested in this matter, particularly in the poultry industry, since almost every year at the Christmas season they send large shipments of poultry to the markets of Ontario and Quebec. They also produce eggs in those provinces, and you would think that they would be the ones interested in seeing that the industry was put on a good paying basis.

The delegates, when they made their representations to the members of the cabinet, stated very definitely that it was in the best interests of the consumer as well as of the producer to keep the dumping clause in effect. They mentioned the fact, which everyone will agree with, that when the application of the dumping clause does not increase the price to the consumer, and when the domestic article is equal to or better than that imported from the outside, the use of home grown products is in the interest not only of the consumer but of the producer, and the government should take cognizance of the fact that in encouraging the consumption of domestic products they are at the same time serving the interests of consumer and producer.

I draw these facts to the attention of the government. I do not wish to labour the question, but I only say to the government that they would be well advised to read care-fullly the statements made by the various delegates when they presented their cases, and to come to the conclusion that the order in council giving protection to these particular products be reinstated.

I therefore beg to move, seconded by Mr. Stirling, the following amendment:

That all the words after the word "that" be stricken out and the following substituted therefor:

"In the opinion of this house the necessary action should be taken by the government forthwith to effectively control the importation into Canada, either on sale, or on consignment, of natural products of a class or kind produced in Canada under conditions which prejudicially or injuriously affect, or threaten to prejudicially or injuriously affect, the interests of Canadian producers".

At six o'clock the house took recess.

After Recess

The house resumed at eight o'clock.

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LIB

Edward James Young

Liberal

Mr. E. J. YOUNG (Weyburn):

Mr. Speaker, two mistaken impressions have gone abroad throughout the country in regard to what has been done in connection with these dumping duties. The first is that the government by order in council has deprived the farmer of what little protection the tariff affords him. That is a mistake. The duty as fixed by the parliament of Canada on natural products has not been tampered with. The duty on fruits and vegetables is as it was. The duty on fresh vegetables to-day is 30 per cent and the duty on fresh fruits is specific, being so much a pound or a box or a barrel, as the case may be. With those duties the government have not interfered and so far as I am aware they have no intention of interfering. The other wrong impression that has gone abroad is that the government, by order in council has repealed the dumping clause in so far as it applies to natural products. That also is a mistake. The dumping clause has not been tampered with in the least. The dumping clause requires no order in council for its enforcement. It applies to-day to fruits and vegetables just as much as ever it did. It applies to fruits and vegetables just as much as it does to manufactured articles. What then has happened? Perhaps I can best explain the matter by referring to the statutes themselves. Let me turn to the dumping clause, which is section 6 of chapter 44 of the revised statutes. It reads:

In the ease of articles exported to Canada of a class or kind made or produced in Canada, if the export or actual selling price to an importer in Canada is less than the fair market value of the same article when sold for home consumption in the usual and ordinary course in the country whence exported to Canada at the time of its exportation to Canada, there shall, in addition to the duties otherwise established, be levied, collected and paid on such article, on its importation into Canada, a special or dumping duty, equal to the difference between the said selling price of the article for

Dumping Duty-Mr. Young (Weyburn)

export and the said fair market value thereof for home consumption; and such special or dumping duty shall be levied, collected and paid on such article, although it is not otherwise dutiable:

Provided that the said special duty shall not exceed fifteen per cent ad valorem in any case;

And so on, with some further exceptions.

To what does that dumping clause apply? It applies to natural products and manufactured goods alike so long as similar goods are produced in Canada. When does it apply? It applies when those products are being dumped into this country. The definition of dumping as given in the clause is that goods are being dumped when they are being sold for export to Canada at a lower price than that at which they are being sold for consumption in the country of origin. What is the penalty attached? The penalty provided in the dumping clause is a special duty equal to fifteen per cent of the value of the goods. What is the method of enforcement? It requires no order in council, no order from the minister, no order from any official in Ottawa. Any person who is interested can go to the collector of customs at the port of entry and say: "These goods are being dumped into this country; they are being sold to us at a lower price than that at which they are being sold, for home consumption in the country from which they came; here is the proof of my statement." That is all that is required to bring the dumping duty into effect and to have the special duty of 15 per cent added.

Let me turn now to what was section 47a or, as it is now numbered, section 43 of the Customs Act. It reads:

If at any time it appears to the satisfaction of the governor in council on a report from the minister, that natural products of a class or kind produced in Canada are being imported into Canada, either on sale or on consignment, under such conditions as prejudicially or injuriously to affect the interests of Canadian producers, the governor in council may, in any case or class of eases, authorize the minister to value such goods for duty, notwithstanding any other provisions of this act, and the value so determined shall be held to be the fair market value thereof.

To what does this apply? It applies only to natural products. When does it apply? It applies when those products are being sold in Canada at a price with which our own producers or growers cannot compete. It takes no cognizance of whether those goods *are being dumped into the country or not, so long as our producers cannot compete with the price. What is the penalty provided? Not a special or dumping duty but an increased valuation which shall be the basis for computing the ordinary duty. What is

the method of enforcement? By order in council. When those goods are coming in and being sold at a price with which our growers cannot compete, then the minister can ask for an order in council which will give him power to impose this arbitrary valuation.

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May 14, 1928