With the exception of a few die hard supporters of Minister Ritz, most farmers are realizing that ending the Wheat Board single desk has reduced choices for wheat and barley farmers on the prairies.
Firstly, none of the grain companies are actually running any pools. And even if Ritz’s CWB II runs a pool, it will not attract the tonnages that it had previously so the benefits will be reduced.
Secondly, most grain companies are only issuing contracts for one or at most two grade of wheat. Since farmers cannot know the grade pattern for a crop that isn’t seeded, they are forced to sign a contract with a grain company in which they don’t know the grade, and must accept the deductions or premiums the company demands if their grain does not meet their contract.
What’s worse is farmers cannot shop around to see if another grain company will grade their grain differently as they use to do when CWB contracts gave them that freedom. If you sign a contract with a grain company, they grade it and you must accept it, and it won’t matter what another company might have graded it as - since the company owns your grain the minute you sign the contract. It appears Ritz’s idea of marketing only includes locking a theoretical price determined by a company, but the grade and service you get is irrelevant!
Aside from the grain companies, about the only people to benefit from this will be Ritz’s Western Canadian Wheat Grower supporter that he has appointed to run his crippled Wheat Board.
Thanks for the choice Ritz!
Lorne. E. Herndier