the relative political importance of groups that oppose substantive changes
in the existing systems, have been made to date. Considerable room for
economic and administrative reform still exists.
In the case of poultry industries, Skogstad has argued that the failure
to make reforms is primarily the fault of Canada's first generation of
marketing agencies and the associated governments that have failed to
require "that producers think of their industry as a Canada-wide one, and
enable their representatives in the private interest governments that
implement supply management policies to set aside provincial concerns
and promote the well-being of the Canadian industry as a whole" ( 1993).
Nevertheless, consumers need more credible representation, "the type that
will only come with better public funding of consumer advocates, either
by government directly or by special levies of the marketing agencies"
( Skogstad, 1993), as well as much patience if they are going to play a role
in encouraging that change.
However, the relationship is not invariant and may change according to the
issue or over time as adequacy of supply changes. An illustration was the battle
during 1991-92 of the Ontario Chicken Producers Marketing Board and the Ontario
processors over pricing policy before the Ontario Farm Products Appeal Tribunal.
On the poultry task force itself, the primary processor representative chaired the
committee, weakening this group's opportunity for input.
Also relevant in this context are the interests and efforts of current dairy
importers to have their considerable potential financial stake maintained through
their efforts to achieve legal ownership of post-GATT tariff-rate import quota. These
efforts are supported by the supply-side coalition which currently encompasses this
group. This coalition opposed allocation of import quota by auction, the method
recommended for dairy products and eggs by the Canadian International Trade
Tribunal (CITT) following the inquiry into the allocation of import quota (CITT, 1992).
With auction allocation, import rents would be captured by the government, rather
than by the importers. The supply-side dairy coalition also unsuccessfully proposed
that new dairy tariff-rate import quota be allocated to the Canadian Dairy
Commission ( CDC) and that the CDC operate a private treaty quota exchange.
Consumer representation was excluded in the subsequent and latest
generation of supply management task forces, the Federal-Provincial Task Force
on Orderly Marketing, or Vanclief task force, named after its chair, the
parliamentary secretary to the Liberal Minister of Agriculture, Ralph Goodale, who
appointed this group in early 1994 to guide post-GATT policy for the
supply-managed sectors. This body stated, "changes to existing structures should
be tied to the level of risk assumed by the participants" (Federal-Provincial Task
Force on Orderly Marketing, 1994). This view ignores the considerable consumer
interests in and costs of the existing structures and reflects the supply-side
composition of this task force.
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: Regulation and Protectionism under GATT:Case Studies in North American Agriculture.
Contributors: Andrew Schmitz - Editor, Garth Coffin - Editor, Kenneth A. Rosaasen - Editor.
Publisher: Westview Press.
Place of publication: Boulder, CO.
Publication year: 1996.
Page number: 296.
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