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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Low prices, high costs push B.C. apple growers to brink of ruin

To read this article please click on the following link:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/british-columbia/low-prices-highcosts
-push-bc-apple-growers-to-brink-of-ruin/article1545515/


I cannot believe the attitude of the British Columbia government in this matter! Why won't you give
funding to these 
apple growers, or find some way that these growers can get financing so they can continue to be
in business? Or better
yet, why hasn't the B.C government helped these apple growers help to develop ways to make 
their operations more
efficient so they can remain in business And what about the free-trade agreement between the
United States and 
Canada! Why isn't the Canadian Government doing something about the fact that American
apples are entering Canada and not taxed at a higher rate? Why was Columbia able to 
get a trade agreement with the United States in which  their apple products  receive
 immediate duty-free treatment?


  see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_–_Colombia_Free_Trade_Agreement


If a Canadian apple grower makes a statement such as this:"The industry’s long-term
 survival depends on innovation and investment in specialized varieties that
 offer higher returns," then why hasn't the British Columbia government
 and the Canadian Federal government offered these British Columbia 
apple growers access to new technology, and why haven't financial 
institutions within British Columbia and Canada  been willing to 
help  find investors in the apple growing business for these apple growers? 




The attitude of the British Columbia Government and Canadian
 Federal Government
 in this matter is
even more disappointing when you can find statements like this on
 the internet:


"In FY07, the  (United States) apple industry received over $6 million in export
 development funds from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Market 
Access Program (MAP). These funds are matched by grower dollars to
promote apples in over 25 countries throughout the world. Since this
 program's inception in 1986, the U.S apple industry has expanded fresh apple
 exports by nearly 150 percent, due in large part to the foreign promotions
 made possible by MAP. In 2007, nearly 25 percent of U.S. fresh apple 
production was exported, with a value of nearly $640 million.
Strong MAP funding is critical to the U.S. apple industry's efforts to 
increase grower profitability by expanding exports. Congress recognized
 the importance of MAP by authorizing increased funding in the 2002
 Farm Bill. During the Farm Bill debate, USApple urged Congress to
 increase the program to $325 million. The House and Senate versions 
of the Farm Bill both provided increases while the Administration's FY09
 budget proposal would hold the program at $200 million.




Source: http://www.usapple.org/industry/legislative/issuepapers.cfm


Canadian politicians need to look at their fiscal priorities much closer! The British Columbia Government
spent $ 4,1653,9299.1 million dollars on Public Administration lin 2008 and
$15,76315,42835.6 million dollars in their Housing budget,
how can they find so much money for these areas but they cannot find money for apple growers?
(source:http://www.bcstats.gov.bc.ca/data/qf.pdf )


Why aren't these apple growers able to find markets in which they would have a comparative advantage?
(see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparative_advantage) for an explanation of this term.


How disappointing when you read this document:



Apple growers ask province for millions in relief

Thu, 2010-03-11 17:11.
Local News
BC orchardists are hoping a meeting with the provincial Agriculture Minister Steve 
Thompson will translate into financial assistance.
Apple prices are so low most growers can't break even let alone make a profit.
BC Fruit Growers' Association president Joe Sardinha says at their meeting Wednesday
 in Victoria they requested $10,000,000 in emergency relief through the Argi-Recovery Program.
Sardinha says, "They (growers) don't have the resources to grow the coming
 year's crop and that sets up a disastrous situation. A lot of growers are at the end of their rope."
"We also outlined to the minister that the so-called programs like Agri-Stability,
 even the interim advance on Agri-Stability isn't going to be enough to assist 
growers with the coming year's expenses and the financial predicament."
The Fruit Growers president isn't ruling out protests if they don't get the help they need.
"They (growers) will be making their own decisions as to what their next steps are in
 outlining the utter frustration and anxiety that they have, in particular, going into
 another year's crop with no cash to produce it."
Sardinha says Thompson promised a decision on their requests within a week to 10 days.
Howard Alexander - Kelowna

source: http://www.am1150.ca/news/565/1099445




Why are the British Columbia and Federal Governments of Canada allowing apples from the United States and
other countries into our country, if British Columbia apple growers are having such a difficult financial time?



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Thoughts worth thinking about

"Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed



Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia



A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed



Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein



The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi



The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller



Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns



Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama



Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -



Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being



The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.