April 11, 1957 (22nd Parliament, 5th Session)


Harry Oliver White

Progressive Conservative

Mr. White (Middlesex East):

They used to grow onions on the farm occupied by the late Mr. Hepburn, but they are not growing onions now. They are not growing onions as they used to do in Erieau or on point

Pelee. They could not market their onions, and onions were being imported at that time.
During the week of February 15, there was imported 33 carloads of onions; 33 carloads of carrots. During the week of February 8, there was imported 56 carloads of potatoes] 22 carloads of apples. All this took place at a time when our farmers were finding it difficult to market some of their products. During the week of March 8, there was imported 119 carloads of vegetables; 48 carloads of onions and 30 carloads of carrots. This gives some idea of the large amount of food imported each week. During the week of March 22, there was imported 104 carloads of celery; 168 carloads of tomatoes; 41 carloads of onions; 76 carloads of potatoes; 5 carloads of pears and 14 carloads of apples. I am using these figures because I wish to show the situation in which this country could find itself in so far as food is concerned if disaster should strike.
I am just pointing that out because with that much food coming in every week how long would we last if our lines of communication with the United States were broken? Here we are spending, as I said, $2,000 million every year for national defence; we are exhorting our citizens to prepare for civil defence, and the mainstay of the people is food. If they have no food they soon perish. I think it is indicative of the lack of foresight on the part of the government that the agricultural producers are finding themselves in the position in which they are now.
I hold in my hand the new stamps that were issued yesterday depicting a loon. I wonder whether they are also indicative of things to come; I wonder whether they have any reference to coming events on June 10.

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