June 6, 1940 (19th Parliament, 1st Session)


Gordon Knapman Fraser

National Government

Mr. FRASER (Northumberland, Ont.):

I should like to make a brief reference to the statement of the hon. member for Royal (Mr. Brooks) in reference to apples grown in New Brunswick. If I heard him correctly, the hon member stated that New Brunswick produced approximately 40,000 barrels. In order to convince my hon. friend that I speak with some authority in connection with apples, may I say in all modesty that the hon. member beside me and I produce that many apples in our two orchards. I have listened attentively to the statements made by other members from the maritime provinces. I do not think anyone will question the quality of the apples produced in Nova Scotia. However, in a discussion of this matter there are one or two fundamentals that should be kept in mind.
In order that it may be a matter of record, I should like to say that the apple growers from British Columbia to Nova Scotia, including Quebec and Ontario, have a most efficient organization. Each and every province is represented, through the fruit growers' association of the province, upon what is known as the apple advisory board. Last year the gentlemen making up this board made certain advances and suggestions to the Minister of Agriculture. These suggestions were considered in the light of the condition which had resulted from the war and in the practical elimination of the export market for apples from Nova Scotia.
I want to endorse heartily the sentiments expressed by the hon. member for Durham (Mr. Rickard). The Canadian Horticultural Council, under the secretaryship and efficient management of Major Burrows, in cooperation with Doctor Barton and his officials, arrived at an agreement whereby a certain quantity of apples in Nova Scotia were taken over and processed under the auspices of and after having been paid for by the federal government. As a result of that, the apple growers

of Ontario and Quebec were assured of the domestic market in .those provinces. As a result of those arrangements, and the additional arrangement made with the growers of British Columbia, the 1939 apple crop was handled to the complete satisfaction of the fruit growers in every province. I believe I can speak with authority for the growers of Ontario.
It was my privilege three weeks _ ago to act as a representative to the Ontario Fruit Growers' association which met in the city of Toronto. Since that meeting, three or four other meetings have been held in Ottawa at which there has been representation from Nova Scotia, Quebec, British Columbia and Ontario. Speaking as I believe I do with some authority,
I contend that the arrangements made with the Department of Agriculture for 1939 were most satisfactory. Perhaps I can give a slight word of warning to the Minister of Agriculture. If the apple growers of Ontario and Quebec, working in conjunction with those in British Columbia and Nova Scotia, can arrive at an arrangement which will provide the same results for the 1940 apple crop, then I think all growers in the country will be entirely satisfied.
I should like to make one or two references to the statement made by the hon. member for Peel (Mr. Graydon), for whom I have the greatest admiration. I am very sorry if he misunderstood anything I said last year. Apparently he took my remarks as criticism of his suggested advertising scheme. That scheme was adopted by the government and I believe the suggestions made by the hon. member were most beneficial. I believe that scheme was carried out in a most efficient and successful manner. The product under discussion last year was tomato juice.
The officials of the fruit branch of the Department of Agriculture have carried on extensive work in the production of apple juice, and they should be given credit for the present state of perfection of this product. I want to endorse most emphatically the statements of the hon. member for Durham and the hon. member for Peel. Consideration should be given by the Department of Finance, the Department of National Revenue and the Department of Agriculture to banning the importation of citrus fruits, at least for the [DOT] duration of the war. I have before me a brief which contains a submission made to the *deputy minister of finance in confirmation of a presentation made, I believe, last year. Many details are set out in this brief, and I believe it contains all that is necessary for the Minister of Finance and the Minister of Agriculture to arrive at some conclusion as

to what should be done about a curtailment of the increasing importation of citrus fruits, particularly from the United States.
I have had an opportunity of saying a word about this to the Minister of Agriculture, and perhaps the Department of Finance might also take notice. Each and every hon. member realizes that it is not only a question of the importation of citrus fruits; there is the more essential question of foreign exchange. The Minister of Agriculture, working in conjunction with the other two departments I have mentioned, can render a service, not only to the fruit and vegetable producers of Canada, but also to Canada's war effort by providing some method of curtailing these importations.
I should like to take this opportunity as a rather large fruit grower in Ontario to thank the minister for what he has done. I want him to know that I was satisfied with the arrangements made last 3rear, but I expect him to do as well this year for the fruit growers of Ontario.

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