These comments are direct quotations from the Hansard documents.

Farm Income Protection

Mr. Yves Rocheleau (Trois-Rivières, BQ): Mr. Speaker, at the end of April the UPA of Grand-Pré and the Envir-Eau-Sol group, which consists of 72 businesses in the regional municipality of Maskinongé, asked the Prime Minister and member for Saint-Maurice personally to guarantee, in their words, “farm income protection systems by increasing the amount provided within the agricultural policy framework so that the Financière du Québec can cover the production costs of our farmers”.

Can the Prime Minister tell us if he intends to reply in the affirmative to the legitimate demands of these agricultural producers from his riding?


Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, we are working with the ministries and the representatives of the agriculture producers across Canada to put in place the announcement that the Prime Minister and I made last June of $5.2 billion in additional new money to help in areas of food safety, business risk management, environment and to help build upon the work that is being done in the provinces already, not to detract from that, but to built upon that.

Mr. Larry McCormick (Hastings—Frontenac—Lennox and Addington, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, concern has been expressed in the agricultural community that new products being introduced into the market could actually harm the market unless that introduction is done responsibly.

Could the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food tell the House what is being done to ensure the agricultural community does not suffer unnecessary market harm from such new products?

Hon. Lyle Vanclief (Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Lib.): Mr. Speaker, first, we can all be very proud of the rigorous and science based regulatory system that we have that is world renowned and highly respected around the world. However, even taking that into consideration, we are aware of the implications that could happen, not necessarily that may happen, with the introduction of new products such as the member has referred to.

I have instructed my department to work with the industry and consult with the industry so we can come up with a process to address that. I believe officials from my department will be at the agriculture standing committee tomorrow and will be able to begin initial discussions on that if the issue is raised there.