Regardless of what happens in GATT and the new World Trade Organization, producers and governments will seek a tolerable degree of shelter from the instability that characterizes agriculture. While both Canada and the United States do not have to worry about food security since they produce in excess of their domestic needs, they do have to worry about trade security. That is they need sufficient stable supplies so that importing countries can safely rely on Canadian and US farmers as their supply sources. Without this level of security on the part of governments and peoples in other countries, the incentives for uneconomic self-sufficiency policies will prevail.
Will these US and Canadian producer and government needs be satisfied by marketing boards, trading blocs, storage programs, income assurance, price supports, income supports or some type of farmer savings program? Time will answer this question. Of all the options available, truly free trade could be the most improbable.
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