June 3, 1921 (13th Parliament, 5th Session)


John Albert Sexsmith



I am not very much in favour of this Bill. It does seem to me that we are making deliberate efforts, not to benefit but to destroy some of the very best industries of the country. I know the farmers are not in favour of this legislation. Cheese factories in Ontario have been closing up by the dozen during the last five or six years, and the dairying industry, one of the most important in the Dominion, is not going forward very fast. The other day we passed a Bill allowing the importation and manufacture of oleomargarine. While I have not anything to say against this commodity I believe that in the course of a few years it will be the greatest menace to our dairying industry. If there is any industry in this country that at least requires to be left alone to work out its own salvation, so to speak, so far as restrictions are concerned, it is the dairying industry. The conduct of a dairy business is the most slavish work under heaven, and hundreds and hundreds of farmers are going out of the business. Now, the minister fcnows that Canadian cheese under the present system stands at the very pinnacle on the British market. If our cheese producers have been so successful in that market,

which is the greatest cheese market in the world, why should we be asked at this late stage of the session to pass this Bill to provide regulations for grading export cheese? A good deal has been said about hurrying legislation through in the last days of the session. We are now having morning, afternoon and night sittings; we were here this morning until between three and four o'clock; and now when we come back here at 11 o'clock we find a Bill before the House which to my mind may be ruinous to certain branches of the dairy industry. I am speaking for the farmers in my district; the hon. member for Hastings (Mr. Thompson) and myself come from a district in which the largest cheese dairying industry in Canada is carried on-the largest cheese producing districts are in Central Ontario and in the Oxford district. The cheese men are opposed to this measure.

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