Western Canadian Wheat Growers (WCWG) is disappointed that CP Rail and Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC) have not been able to reach an agreement.
In a news release, the group says with CP serving lockout notice, an interruption in rail service will be devastating.
“It is inconceivable that grain farmers would be facing a CP rail stoppage at this time. After a historic poor crop last year, devastating floods in BC, unseasonable winter conditions and now a war in Ukraine, grain farmers question whether the rail parties understand the impact of a stoppage at this time,” said Daryl Fransoo, Chair and Saskatchewan Director.
WCWG says food security has taken a serious blow in recent months, with rising inflation, rising input costs and the very real potential of wheat shortages globally. The price of all food is predicted to rise by up to 8% in 2022. This is an increase of almost $1,000 for the average Canadian family. WCWG notes the April 1 increase of the carbon tax only adds to the pain that all Canadians will feel for the price of food. In addition, the 2022 crop will be the most expensive crop Canadian grain farmers have ever planted.
WCWG says that over the past 12 years, there have been 12 stoppages through either weather related, illegal activities or strike actions, adding disruptions to rail service is a complete disregard to the Canadian economy.
“Farmers have seen mediocre service for the better part of the grain year. The railways are absolutely critical infrastructures for our industry and for the Canadian economy. With a work stoppage pending we implore the federal government to use all necessary means to ensure there isn’t further interruption in the movement of Canadian grain to export positions,” added Fransoo.