Farm groups and the fertilizer industry are calling on the government to provide support to farmers over the impact of tariffs imposed on Russian fertilizers.
• Read also: Soaring prices, stifling competition: a farmer cries out from the heart
Farm groups and the fertilizer industry made a plea to the federal government on Monday. They are asking that it compensate farmers in eastern Canada who have suffered the impacts of the customs tariffs it has imposed on fertilizers imported from Russia.
"Farmers have had to bear the cost of tariffs, which has put Canadian farmers at a disadvantage compared to farmers in other countries where such tariffs have not been imposed on fertilizers," said Christian Overbeek, president of Les Producteurs de grains du Québec, in a press release. We must compensate farmers and provide them with concrete solutions for the 2023 planting season and implement these solutions this summer.”
A customs tariff since March
As a reminder, a customs tariff of 35% on all Russian imports, including fertilizers, was introduced on March 3. Agricultural groups and the fertilizer sector complain that no prior consultation with the agricultural sector has taken place.
A total of approximately 660,000 to 680,000 tonnes of nitrogen fertilizer is believed to be imported from Russia each year into eastern Canada, representing 85 to 90% of all nitrogen fertilizer.
While agricultural groups note that the industry “strongly supports the Ukrainian people” and “condemns the Russian invasion,” they believe the actions taken by the Canadian government could jeopardize the country's ability to produce food.