We are all familiar with the messages: “If you ate today, thank a farmer” and “Farmers Feed Cities.”But how do these sentiments fare in the rest of the world? Pretty well, thanks. Most Canadian consumers have a high regard for the people who produce their food. But few can fully understand the issues that concern the industry, even though surveys show that shoppers want to learn more about the most vital link in the food chain. Red tape is a problem every business owner faces and loathes. Farmers are no different, says Ernie Hardeman, Oxford M.P.P. and PC Critic for Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. During Ontario Agriculture Week, the week before Thanksgiving, Hardeman released re- sults from his recent agriculture survey and tried to make some political hay. “Ontario famers sent a clear message – they are struggling with red tape and under this government the problem is getting worse,” said Hardeman “Ontario farmers now spend the equivalent of four work weeks every year just dealing with government forms and paperwork.” About 77.2 per cent of respondents said that red tape is increasing. Ontario farmers spend 154.2 hours a year just filling out government forms; 66.4 per cent said there were examples of red tape and/or regulations that add to their workload and/or hinder their operation, but have no value.“Ontario AgricultureWeek is a time to celebrate our farmers but it is also a good opportunity to examine whether we are doing every- thing that we can to help them succeed,” said Hardeman. “It’s clear from the results of this survey that much more needs to be done to strengthen the agriculture industry and support local food. We need to ensure farmers are able to focus on growing great Ontario food. This Thanksgiving I hope that people will support our farmers by choosing local food and by telling our government that they need to do better.” Anything that helps farmers would be backed by most Canadians, according to a Farm and Food Care poll. Canadians continue to have an increasingly positive impression of Canadian agricul- ture, with 88 per cent of those surveyed ranking it positive or neutral, up from 81 per cent in 2009 and 75 per cent in 2006. The findings can be found in the 2012 Farm and Food Care “Canadian Attitudes Study towards Food and Farming” study. Health care and the economy are at the top of the worry list. “Our research shows that although food and farming isn’t a top-of-mind issue for most Canadians, most have an overall positive im- pression of our food, how it’s grown and the people who produce it,” says Crystal Mackay, Executive Director, Farm & Food Care. “Canadians ranked farmers as warmly and favour- ably as their own family and friends, just slightly above doctors and other medical profes- sionals.” This year’s research, which builds on previous studies dating back to 2001, was expand- ed to include gathering public opinion on the five pillars of sustainable food: food safety, environment, farm animal health and welfare, human health and economics/food afford- ability. Canadians feel they are generally better informed about food and farming than they were even three years ago, and more than half of them are interested in learning more. About 70 per cent have visited a farm at least once. They are concerned about rising costs; many try to buy local by purchasing Canadian food products when possible. “This tracking research goes a long way in helping farmers and people in the agri-food business to understand what Canadians believe, both today and in monitoring trends over time, as they relate to the importance of agriculture, inter- est and what people would like to know more about how their food is produced,” says Mackay. Farm & Food Care is a non-profit association that represents farmers and related businesses with a mandate to provide credible information on food and farming in On- tario. For more information on the study, visit . It is not surprising that people like farmers. What is there not to like? Well, you might want to check out a Conference Board of Canada report on milk quotas, always a hot is- sue. Dairy supply management, a sacred cow for producers, has met its primary policy objectives of reducing the industry’s chronic milk surpluses and providing increased and stable returns to farmers, the study concludes. But addressing these long-standing prob- lems has come at a cost — reducing the industry’s overall economic competitiveness and performance and complicating Canada’s international trade relationships, according to the report. “Though most Canadians drink milk or eat yogurt or cheese, few are aware of the long- standing, complex supply management system that establishes milk prices and supply at the farm level and limits dairy imports,”said Al Mussell, co-author of the report and Senior Research Associate at the George Morris Centre. Canada was a dairy product exporter in the early 20th century and was a significant supplier, particularly of cheese, to the United Kingdom duringWorldWar II. But in post-war Europe, as production bounced back, Cana- dian cheese exports dropped sharply. The Canadian dairy industry responded by shifting production to serve the domestic market. But the transition led to surpluses and lower farmer incomes. The federal and provincial governments intervened to stabilize markets. Over the past two decades, the quota system has been targeted, but salvaged, during international trade talks. “As it has evolved to changes, Canada’s milk supply manage- ment regulation has created some unintended costs and burdens. The challenge for the Canadian dairy industry and policy-makers is to foster changes in the supply manage- ment system that reflect today’s market conditions and economic policy context without handicapping industry stakeholders, including dairy farmers, processors and consumers,” points out Mussell. Future publications based on this research will consider how Canada’s dairy supply system compares with other countries, and will discuss sources of tension within the Canadian dairy industry. As you can see, when it comes to understanding farming, there is much to digest. Farm issues, food chain

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Pour plusieurs automobilistes, lire et com- prendre les informations imprimées sur le flanc d’un pneu d’hiver peut paraître aussi compliqué et abstrait que de lire dans une tasse de thé! Cependant, il est important de bien comprendre cette information afin de s’assurer que le pneu est approprié au type de véhicule et au style de conduite. Prenons l’exemple d’un pneu de dimen- sion P205/55R16 91H. La lettre «P» veut dire «Passager ou Passenger» et cela signifie que le pneu s’adresse à un véhicule de tourisme ou de promenade comme une berline, un coupé ou un petit véhicule utilitaire. D’autres pneus commencent par l’appellation «LT» pour «Light Truck», ce qui signifie qu’ils servent à chausser un VUS grand format, une camionnette ou un fourgon. Le chiffre «205» mentionne la largeur du pneu en millimètres. Plus le chiffre est haut, plus le pneu est large. Le chif- fre «55» désigne la hauteur du flanc en proportion de la largeur du pneu. Dans ce cas-ci, le flanc a une hauteur représentant 55 % de la largeur soit (205 mm x 55 % = 112,75 mm). Plus la hauteur du pneu est basse, plus le pneu est sportif, ce qui amé-

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Le pneu X-Ice MD Xi3 MC de MICHELIN MD réduit jusqu’à 10 % votre distance de freinage sur la glace et dure jusqu’à deux fois plus longtemps que des principaux concurrents. 1,2 SÉCURITAIRE , HIVER APRÈS HIVER



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