Mr. C. WALLACE STEWART (Humboldt) :
Mr. Speaker, I desire to enter a protest against the concurrence of this House particularly in one of the amendments made by the Senate to the bill as it was approved of in this chamber. I refer to the amendment made to section 140.
It is not necessary for me, Mr. Speaker, to emphasize the fact that throughout western Canada, where the great bulk of our wheat is produced, the opinion is prevalent that the process of mixing, which is a process adopted by those who market the grain, and not by the producers, is detrimental to the best interests of the producer in that his grain thus mixed reaches the final market in a condition not as pure, and with a grade not as high, as that which it has when it leaves the farm. When the bill was before this House I moved an amendment to section 140 which required that grain coming out of the mixing elevators
should be judged on a standard equal to that in Winnipeg, not on the lowest of the standards that is passed in Winnipeg, but on the average of that standard. That amendment was approved by this House, but the upper body, in its wisdom, has seein fit to reject that amendment that this House approved of, and to insert in its place a section which does not require that the grain coming out of the mixing elevator shall be of a grade equal to the average grade of the grain passing inspection at Winnipeg.
It is my opinion, Sir, that if the grain as it comes from the mixing elevator were required to be of a standard equal to the average of the standard on which the farmer's grain is inspected, at least the greater part of the objection to mixing would be done away with. I am informed by those who are well acquainted with this process of mixing that to require the mixing elevators to reach such a standard would practically do away with their business; the profit would be gone, and consequently mixing to a great extent would be stopped. If that would be the result, then, Sir, I would be willing to take the result of my amendment and I submit to this House that the producers of Canada would be behind us in that stand. If the profit is secured by bringing the grade lower than the average of the grade the farmer secures, the mixing elevators are taking an undue profit out of us and damaging our product before it reaches the final market.
It is said that my amendment is impracticable, that it could mot be worked. Well, Sir, if that is true I submit this, that it is a good way to prohibit something that should not be carried on. It is a fact that there are every year a number of bushels of low grade grain produced, and a very considerable quantity in some years. I am of the opinion that the privilege to mix this grain is a special privilege granted to companies operating elevators with a license to engage in this process, as a system by which this low grade grain is 'absorbed into the market with perhaps greater facility; but if iin absorbing the lower grades of grain we are to seriously deteriorate the higher grades of our grain and lower its value in the ultimate market-the Liverpool market-I submit we are doing something that is wholly contrary to the best interests of the producers. All that the amendment that was made in this House called for was that the product from the mixing elevator should be equal to the average of the grade which the farmer secures for his product from the farm. We are granting not only a special privilege in mixing, but if
we approve, as the government mow moves to approve, of the amendment made by the upper chamber, we are also granting a special privilege to the mixing elevator enabling them to ship out a product which is lower in grade than the average which the producer himself receives.
In making this protest, Mr. Speaker, I speak for at least the majority of those sitting around me, and I believe a very considerable majority, and we want our protest om record because we represent in this House first of all the producers of this country.
Motion agreed to on division; amendments read the second time and concurred in.
Subtopic: CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS