(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "Serving agriculture : Canada's Ministers of Agriculture, 1867-1997"

1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Serving 
Agriculture 



Canada's Ministers of Agriculture 



1867-1997 




Canada 



Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2011 with funding from 

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada - Agriculture et Agroalimentaire Canada 



http://www.archive.org/details/servingagricultuOOmcgr 



Preface 



Agriculture is one of the most complex and demanding portfolios in 
the Government of Canada. The industry is diverse, encompassing 
everything from conservation and resource issues to processing 
technology and international trade. The agriculture and food sector 
represents businesses both big and small; it is simultaneously the 
subject of sophisticated international trade negotiations and a 
traditional way of life for thousands of farm families. Finally, it 
affects not only rural communities but also urban manufacturing, 
processing and transportation conglomerates. From early settlers 
stepping off boats at Grosse Isle to Asian businesspeople sampling 
maple syrup on a trade mission, the department has presided over an 
industry that in many ways defines Canada's unique character. 

Summarizing each of these ministers' careers and contributions has 
not been easy. Some of these gentlemen served for many years or over 
multiple terms. Others served only for a few months. It 's hard to 
profile a minister who served for 22 years in the same manner as 
someone who served for only three months, but I've done my best. If 
I've omitted something important or made an error, please let us 
know. 



The department has had a spectacular array of personalities and 
talents in its minister's office over the years. Some were farmers, some 
were not. Some were veteran politicians for whom this was just one of 
many roles. For others, their time as minister of agriculture defined 
their professional and political careers. Through crisis, triumph or 
controversy, each minister left a unique legacy with the department. 
Some went on to serve in other portfolios, to lead provincial 
governments, or to accept appointments as board members, senators 
or lieutenant-governors. We've not yet seen one become prime 
minister, but perhaps this is still to come. 

The following profiles tell the story of our department, our industry 
and our country over the last 130 years. I'd like to thank my library 
colleagues for all their help, and former ministers Bud Olson, Eugene 
Whelan, John Wise, Don Mazankowski and Charlie Mayer for 
agreeing to be interviewed for this project. 



Janyce McGregor 

Canadian Agriculture Library 

September 1997 



Introduction 



When I reflect upon the Ministers of Agriculture who have preceded 
me, I confess it is a little humbling. 

I know something of the fabric of my recent predecessors, but there 
are so many more. That 's why this book is valuable to me. On each 
page, there is evidence of the stimulating, and indeed, demanding 
nature of this portfolio. Canada 's first agriculture minister, Jean- 
Charles Chapais, had hardly begun his term when he was faced with 
a possible plague of "texian fever" carried on imported horned 
cattle. Our third Minister, John Henry Pope was already grappling 
with exhausted virgin soils as early as the 1880s. And by the 1890s, 
the department under John Carting was experimenting with 300 
varieties of potatoes and mailing information to some 30,000 
farmers. 

What this book captures, above all, is the humanity in the job; its 
trials and triumphs come in a surprising number of forms. After the 
First World War, for example, the department sponsored egg-laying 
contests to stimulate poultry flock performance: Canada's champion 
hen produced a world record 351 eggs in a single year. 

I can quite honestly say that I have a passion for stories such as 
this — and in fact for the agriculture and agri-food industry in 
Canada. I have lived and breathed agriculture all of my life. 
It's an incredible industry with incredible opportunities for growth. 

As Canada's 27' h agriculture minister, I will have the privilege of 
guiding the department in the next few years — years in which the 
sector stands to figure prominently in meeting Canada's goals: to 
spur economic growth and reap the benefits of liberalized trade. 



These are not new directions for Canada. In 1876, our fourth 
Minister Luc Letellier de Saint-Just, exhibited some international 
acumen when Canada participated in its first trade show: the 
Philadelphia World Fair. Through 130 years of nationhood, trade 
has become increasingly important, and, thanks in large part to the 
efforts of my predecessors, we're doing very well indeed. We 
produce some of the best food products in the world and, clearly, the 
world knows it. 

A key trademark of the nineties is partnership: the industry is 
actively involved in taking Canada into the global arena. It's 
through partnership that Canada continues to solidify its reputation 
for food quality and safety, for world-class agricultural science and 
technology, and for innovation. These are our tickets to expanding 
our markets throughout the world, for the benefit of all Canadians. 

My long involvement in agriculture has taught me to have a 
profound respect for the sector and its people. History has 
demonstrated, generation after generation, what can be 
accomplished by those who work to put food on the tables of the 
nation, and indeed, tables around the world. 

Our strong foundation was laid in years past, and ably maintained 
by determined and talented people across the country. It's this strength, 
this ability to work together, that will enable us to continue to meet 
the challenges of the marketplace. I am proud to be a part of it. 



Lyle Vanclief 

Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food 

and Minister Coordinating Rural Affairs 



III 



Canadian Ministers of Agriculture Since Confederation 



Jean-Charles Chapais 
1867/07/01 - 1869/11/15 



Martin Burrell 
1911/10/16 - 1917/10/12 



John J. Greene 
1965/12/18 - 1968/07/05 



Christopher Dunkin 
1869/11/16 - 1871/10/24 



Thomas Alexander Crerar 
1917/10/12 - 1919/06/11 



Horace Andrew (Bud) Olson 
1968/07/06 - 1972/11/26 



John Henry Pope 

1871/10/25 - 1873/11/05 
1878/10/17 - 1885/09/24 



Simon Fraser Tolmie 
1919/08/12 - 1921/12/29 
1926/07/13 ■ 1926/09/25 



Eugene Francis Whelan 
1972/11/27 - 1979/06/03 
1980/03/03 - 1984/06/29 



Luc Letellier de Saint-Just 
1873/11/07 - 1876/12/14 

Charles Alphonse Pantaleon Pelletier 

1877/01/26 - 1878/10/08 

John Carling 
1885/09/25 - 1892/11/24 

Auguste-Real Angers 

1892/12/07 - 1895/07/12 

Walter Humphries Montague 
1895/12/21 - 1896/01/05 
1896/01/15 - 1896/07/08 



William Richard Motherwell 
1921/12/29 - 1926/06/28 
1926/09/25 - 1930/08/07 

Robert Weir 
1930/08/08 - 1935/10/23 

James Garfield Gardiner 
1935/11/04 - 1957/06/21 

Douglas Scott Harkness 
1957/06/21 - 1960/10/10 

Francis Alvin George Hamilton 
1960/10/11 - 1963/04/22 



John Wise 

1979/06/04 - 1980/03/02 

1984/09/17 - 1988/09/14 

Ralph Ferguson 
1984/06/30 - 1984/09/16 

Donald Frank Mazankowski 
1988/09/15 - 1991/04/20 

William Hunter McKnight 
1991/04/21 - 1993/01/04 

Charles James Mayer 
1993/01/04 - 1993/11/04 



Sydney Arthur Fisher 
1896/07/13 - 1911/10/06 



Harry William Hays 
1963/04/22 - 1965/12/17 



Ralph Goodale 
1993/11/04 - 1997/06/11 



* Excluding interim acting ministers 



V 



Compiled in 1997. 

Publication 1990/E 

Available from 

Canadian Agriculture Library 

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada 

Ottawa, Ontario Kl A 0C5 

© Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada 1998 
Cat. No: A22- 183/1 998E 
ISBN: 0-662-27416-4 

Egalement disponible en frangais : 1990/F - Au service de I 'agriculture 

Ministres de V Agriculture du Canada 
1867-1997 



® 



Printed on recycled paper with vegetable ink. 



Serving 
Agriculture 

Canada's Ministers 
of Agriculture 

1867-1997 




M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Jean-Charles Chapais 

July I, 1867- November 15, 1869 




3 



Jean-Charles Chapais 

(1811-1885) 

Birthplace 

Riviere-Ouelle, Lower Canada 

Federal Constituency 

Kamouraska (Quebec) 

Education 

Nicolet College (1824-1830) 

Professional Background 

General retail merchant, fishery owner and 
cattle farmer; helped establish local church, 
library 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



"As a farmer and longtime representative 
of one of the most beautiful farming 
regions of Quebec, working for 
agricultural prosperity is, to my way 
of thinking, more than a duty. It is also 
a source of immense pleasure. " 
— Jean-Charles Chapais, letter to his 
supporters, July 8, 1867 



Political Career 

The Chapais were one of the wealthy, 
politically active families that guided the 
development of the parish community of 
St-Denis. Jean-Charles Chapais was the first 
mayor, while his father-in-law, the wealthy 
merchant and seigneur Amable Dionne, 
served in the colonial government 
representing Kamouraska. 

Dionne encouraged Chapais to run for 
election to the legislative assembly when a 
seat became vacant. After one unsuccessful 
attempt, Chapais was elected in 1851 and 
re-elected in four consecutive elections. 

In 1 864, a coalition of parties agreed to 
prorogue the assembly and concentrate on 
achieving Confederation to end the political 
stalemate in Upper and Lower Canada, 
which are now the provinces of Ontario and 
Quebec. Chapais was appointed 
commissioner of public works and served in 
cabinet through the Confederation 
conferences and debates. He established the 
Intercolonial Railway and developed the 
Grand Trunk Railway — infrastructure that 
laid the groundwork for Confederation. 

On July 1, 1867, Chapais became Canada's 
first minister of agriculture. He understood 
the industry well, having written a 13-part 
report on Quebec agriculture in 1851. 



Later that summer, he ran to represent 
Kamouraska at both the provincial and 
federal levels. Rioting and a scandal over 
irregularities in voting procedures cancelled 
the election and the riding lost its right to 
representation for two years. Chapais was 
acclaimed for Champlain in the Quebec 
national assembly in December 1 867 and 
was appointed to the Senate in January 1868. 

Chapais' agriculture portfolio became 
onerous over time. His party's popularity 
also was waning under the pressures of 
governing a new country. Prime Minister 
John A. Macdonald needed to bring new 
people into cabinet — especially MPs from 
the House of Commons. Chapais was 
transferred to the receiver general portfolio, 
a less demanding but thankless job. In 1873, 
he resigned from cabinet because he was 
disenchanted with Ottawa life and wanted 
to spend more time with his family and 
business. He continued to serve as a senator 
until his death in 1885. 



Industry Issues 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



Canadian agriculture in the 19th century 
reflected a diversity of farm climates, soil 
types and growing seasons. Some regions, 
such as Quebec, had been farmed for 
generations. Others, such as the Northwest 
Territories, hadn't yet been settled. 

Early farmers and new settlers lacked the time 
and resources to solve their own problems. The 
department acted first in an area of immediate 
concern: the impact of animal disease on dairy 
and livestock production. 

Departmental Developments 

Before Confederation, the province of 
Canada had a small and relatively ineffective 
bureau of agriculture. Chapais oversaw a 
small Ottawa office of just 23 clerks — a far 
cry from the thousands of professionals 
employed by the department in the 1990s. 

In 1 868, the federal government passed an 
Act to organize and establish the Department 
of Agriculture. Its mandate went beyond 
traditional agriculture concerns to include 
immigration and emigration; public health 
and quarantine; the marine and emigrant 
hospital at Quebec; arts and manufacturing; 
census activities, statistics and registration; 
patents; copyright; and industrial designs and 
trademarks. 



Chapais' first recorded action was an Order 
in Council on August 13, 1868 prohibiting 
imports of horned cattle from the United 
States into Ontario and Quebec. A plague of 
"texian fever" in cattle threatened to 
contaminate livestock transported by rail. 
Chapais appointed Canada's first two 
agricultural inspectors to enforce the ban at 
two Ontario border crossings. 

The first departmental legislation was An Act 
Respecting the Contagious Diseases of 
Animals, passed in 1869. Farmers trying to 
establish livestock herds needed protection 
from rinderpest and other European diseases. 

Canada's first chief veterinary inspector 
oversaw early inspections and quarantines at 
maritime ports and American border 
crossings to prevent diseased animals from 
entering Canada. Existing diseases were 
monitored and controlled. These basic 
principles of inspection and disease control 
still exist in the current Health of Animals 
Act (1990). 



Canada's first prime minister, John A. 
Macdonald, nicknamed Chapais "my 
little nun" for his dedication to the 
Catholic Church and the civil institutions 
of French Canadians. 

Chapais was a delegate to the Quebec 
Conference of 1 864, where the 72 
Resolutions that led to Canadian 
Confederation were debated and passed. 
He is one of the Fathers of Confederation 
seated around the table in Robert Harris' 
famous portrait. 

Dr. J.C. Tache, the first deputy minister 
of the department, was both a nephew of 
former Quebec leader Etienne-Pascal 
Tache and Chapais' trusted ally from 
Kamouraska. 

Two of Chapais' political rivals in 
Kamouraska also became ministers of 
agriculture. 



Early annual reports hardly mention 
agriculture, focusing on more immediate 
colonial concerns such as immigration. 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Christopher Dunkin 

November 16, 1869 - October 24, 1871 




Christopher Dunkin 

(1812-1881) 

Birthplace 

Walworth, England 

Federal Constituencies 

Drummond-Arthabaska, Brome (Quebec) 

Education 

University of London, Glasgow University, 
Harvard University 

Professional Background 

Harvard professor; editor of Montreal's 
Morning Courier, secretary of Lord 
Durham's education commission (1838) and 
the postal service commission (until 1842); 
assistant provincial secretary, Canada East, 
1842-1847; called to the bar in 1846. 
practised law in Montreal and later in 
Knowlton, Quebec; served on the Council of 
Public Instruction in 1859 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



Political Career 

Christopher Dunkin was defeated in his first 
attempt to represent Drummond in the 
colonial legislative assembly in 1844. His 
second attempt at politics was more 
successful, although his tenure was brief: he 
was elected to the assembly in 1 858 to 
represent Drummond-Arthabaska, but he lost 
the seat in 1861. Finally, the resilient Dunkin 
was elected to represent Brome, a seat he 
held from 1862 until Confederation. 

Dunkin contributed to the crisis in 
government that eventually led to Canadian 
Confederation when he refused to support 
the government of fellow Conservatives John 
A. Macdonald and Etienne-Pascal Tache in 
1864. The loss of his vote denied their 
ministry the majority it needed to stay in 
power. The legislative gridlock that resulted 
from the government's fall led to the 
desperate coalition of parties that eventually 
achieved Confederation. Ironically, Dunkin. 
who represented the English Protestant 
minority in Quebec's Eastern Townships, 
opposed Confederation during the 
parliamentary debates of 1865. He predicted 
that the new country would have too many 
regional, racial, religious and political 
differences to develop as a nation. 

In 1867, Dunkin was elected to both the 
House of Commons and the Quebec national 
assembly for Brome. He turned down a 
Quebec cabinet position because premier- 
designate Joseph Edouard Cauchon would 



not introduce and support a bill giving 
Protestants their own schools. Pierre Joseph 
Olivier Chauveau, a former associate of 
Dunkin's, was more willing to address 
Protestants' needs. Chauveau became 
premier and formed Quebec's first provincial 
government. Dunkin was his treasurer from 
1867 to 1869 and was so influential that 
people nicknamed it the "Chauveau-Dunkin" 
government. 

In 1869, Prime Minister Macdonald 
rearranged his cabinet and needed a new 
English-speaking Quebec representative. 
When his first choice, John Henry Pope, 
refused — only to accept two years later — 
Macdonald appointed Dunkin minister of 
agriculture. Dunkin, however, was in poor 
health and losing political support. In 1871, 
Dunkin resigned and left politics to become a 
puisne judge of the Superior Court of 
Quebec until his death in 1881. 

Departmental Developments 

Dunkin owned a 316-acre industrial-sized 
farm in Knowlton on Lac Brome and was no 
stranger to agricultural issues. Like Chapais 
before him, most of his concerns at the 
Department of Agriculture had little to do 
with what would appear to be important to 
agricultural policy today. Annual reports of 
the period dwell on immigration issues and 
the collection of statistics. 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



The only agricultural concern Dunkin 
appears to have faced was a brief scare over 
a resurgence of the cattle plague that caused 
Chapais to ban American horned cattle 
imports for several weeks in 1868. In 1870, 
after an investigation by Ontario government 
officials, Dunkin concluded there was no 
cause for alarm. 



Dunkin's political legacy may have more 
to do with his role as Quebec's minister 
of finance than his achievements as 
Canada's minister of agriculture. 

Dunkin started a tradition in Quebec 
politics that lasted over a century: 
appointing an English-speaking member 
of the assembly as Quebec's treasurer. 



Dunkin might have been ahead of his 
time on federal-provincial issues, 
strongly advocating the equality of 
federal and provincial governments and 
espousing what biographer Pierre Corbeil 
calls a "true Quebecker's view of politics 
and the Constitution." Dunkin believed 
the provincial government had to take an 
active role in Quebec's economic 
development, even though provinces 
depended on Ottawa for revenue. 



8 



■*l 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



John Henry Pope 

October 25, 1871 - November 5. 1873 

and October 17, 1878 - September 24, 1885 




{jr*\ 



?//**'. 'if >Yi 

• ! 3 







//> 






AV TV 



^J >• v 



«r /, 



Canada 



/ / 



John Henry Pope 

(1824-1889) 

Birthplace 

Eaton Township, Lower Canada 

Federal Constituency 

Compton (Quebec) 

Education 

Compton High School, Eastern Townships 

Professional Background 

Farmer, investor and promoter in Cookshire, 
Quebec; owner, president or director of 
lumber mill, railway, bank, public utility and 
woollen mill 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 

"This Department, although charged . . . 
with the subject of Agriculture, has not 
hitherto, except incidentally, dealt with 
it . . . The subject is, however, of the 
greatest importance to Canada, and 
the branch, properly organized, would 
be of very great service. . .in facilitating 
improvements in agriculture. . . to 
enable our farmers to compete with 
those of other countries. " 
— John Henry Pope, 1 87 1 Department of 
Agriculture annual report 



Political Career 

Pope represented his township on 
Sherbrooke county council in the 1 840s. He 
ran unsuccessfully for a seat in the colonial 
government in 1851, 1853 and 1854 before 
being acclaimed to the legislative assembly 
in 1857. He represented the riding of 
Compton in the assembly and, later, in the 
House of Commons until he died in 1889. 
Once in office, he proved to be a popular 
representative. He often ran unopposed or 
won with large margins. 

As was the case with many Confederation- 
era politicians, Pope's mix of politics and 
business was frequently controversial. He 
was involved in questionable land deals and 
his efforts to secure a railway link for his 
county and his businesses tangled him in a 
web of deal-making with local, provincial 
and federal government officials. 

Pope's farm was his original and constant 
business interest. He was one of the first 
Canadians to try to improve cattle herds by 
importing thoroughbred stock. When he was 
appointed minister of agriculture in 1871, he 
became the first minister to focus on 
agricultural issues. Pope resigned with the 
rest of Macdonald's cabinet over the Pacific 
railway scandal of 1873. When the 
Conservatives were re-elected in 1 878, Pope 
went back to his old portfolio. 



Later in Pope's second term, he also became 
acting minister of railways and canals. When 
the government could not find British capital 
to complete the Canadian Pacific Railway 
(CPR), Pope took action to secure the 
necessary construction contract, persuading 
Macdonald to offer the CPR a controversial 
$30-million loan in 1884 so it could finish 
construction. In 1885, Pope officially became 
minister of railways and canals. Even though 
he had cancer of the liver, he continued to 
serve in that portfolio until he died in 1889. 

Industry Issues 

Canadian agriculture was in a "transition 
state" between a system where farmers 
depended on virgin soil — fast becoming 
exhausted from use — and a more 
sophisticated system of soil maintenance. 
Farmers needed new farming techniques to 
diversify and improve productivity and 
sustainability on farms. 

The Conservatives' "National Policy", a 
scheme of preferential tariffs designed to 
promote east-west trade across Canada, also 
developed agriculture. As shipping methods 
for livestock improved, disease and injury in 
transit decreased. More valuable, pedigreed 
animals were imported to improve the 
quality of Canadian herds and exports. 
Farmers established large cattle ranches at 
the foot of the Rocky Mountains in the 
Northwest Territories. 



10 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



By 1878, the department oversaw the new 
Library of Parliament, an infant public 
archives, and the national census. It 
continued to be responsible for immigration, 
since many settlers arrived ready to buy 
farms or land thanks to an agricultural 
depression in the United Kingdom. 

The department also expanded its efforts in 
animal disease control. It began actively 
discouraging the use of American ports with 
inferior health facilities after some Canadian 
animals had to be destroyed because of foot 
and mouth disease before reaching the 
United Kingdom. Pope banned the import of 
American cattle in 1879 and 1884, except at 
points where quarantine and inspection were 
available, to avoid an outbreak of pleuro- 
pneumonia and to maintain Canada's strong 
reputation for disease control in the eyes of 
British trade officials. 



Pope presided over early attempts to gather 
agricultural statistics. By 1883, he was 
supervising a comprehensive system of crop 
reporting for Manitoba and the Northwest 
Territories. The findings showed great 
potential for wheat production, settlement 
and economic development in the Canadian 
West. 

International and domestic exhibitions 
promoted Canadian agricultural products at 
home and abroad. Pope presided over the 
awarding and distribution of medals as well 
as the organization and funding of these 
events. 

In 1883, Pope responded to recent crop 
damage due to insect attacks by appointing 
the first departmental entomologist. 



Pope served in the militia during the 
Lower Canada Rebellion of 1837. 

Pope was a loyalist and opposed the 
American annexationist movement. He 
became friends with John A. Macdonald 
at a meeting of the British American 
League in Kingston. He later acted as an 
intermediary between Macdonald and 
George Brown in the Confederation 
negotiations. 



Department inspectors were dispatched to 
implement quarantines to control livestock 
diseases in Canadian communities. Pope was 
the first minister to recognize that producers 
would co-operate with disease control 
measures only if they realized a net benefit 
from the government's interventions. For the 
first time, farmers whose diseased animals 
were slaughtered received compensation. 



11 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Luc Letellier de Saint-Just 

November 7, 1873 - December 14, 1876 







*'* 



I' r 



/ 



tv , 



/y* 



; /' , 



Canada 



12 



Luc Letellier 
de Saint-Just 

(1820-1881) 

Birthplace 

Riviere-Ouelle, Lower Canada 

Federal Constituencies 

Kamouraska, Grandville (Quebec) 

Education 

College of Ste. Anne de la Pocatiere, 
Petit Seminaire de Quebec 

Professional Background 

Trained as a notary, admitted as a 
notary public in 1841 and practised in 
Riviere-Ouelle 

Political Affiliation 
Liberal 

"His initiative and daring, legal 

knowledge and speaking proficiency 
predestined him to take up a career 

in politics. " 

— Philippe-Baby Casgrain, Letellier de 

Saint-Just et son temps 



Political Career 

Letellier's first political rival was Canada's 
first minister of agriculture, Jean-Charles 
Chapais. Letellier won only the first of five 
electoral contests he waged in Kamouraska 
against Chapais and served briefly in the 
colonial legislative assembly in 1851. These 
political confrontations were bitter and hard- 
fought — violence and corruption plagued 
both sides. Both candidates received support 
from family connections and local rivalries. 

Alter 10 years of defeats, Letellier was 
appointed to the legislative council 
representing Grandville in 1860. He served 
briefly as minister of agriculture for the 
united colonies of Canada East and Canada 
West in 1863 when the Grit/Rouge coalition 
government sent the struggling Conservative/ 
Bleu alliance to the opposition benches 

Letellier originally opposed Confederation 
because he feared for the future of French 
culture. He eventually came to support the 
union and agreed to lead the Liberals in the 
Senate. Like other political leaders of the 
period, Letellier also sought election to the 
Quebec national assembly but w as 
unsuccessful in winning a seat. 



When the Macdonald government fell in the 
face of the Pacific scandal of November 1873, 
the new Liberal prime minister, Alexander 
Mackenzie, appointed Letellier minister of 
agriculture and leader of the Senate. 

Three years later, when the lieutenant- 
governor of Quebec died, Mackenzie 
reluctantly parted with Letellier, his second- 
in-command, and appointed him to that post. 
Letellier was a controversial lieutenant- 
governor, dismissing Boucher de 
Boucherville's government in March 1878 
over a railway policy of which he did not 
approve. The federal government refused to 
tolerate what Quebec Conservatives saw as a 
"coup d'etat". Prime Minister Macdonald, 
who had recently been re-elected, removed 
Letellier from office in July 1879. Letellier 
retired, and died two years later of a heart 
attack at his home in Riviere-Ouelle. 

Industry Issues 

As minister, Letellier actively encouraged the 
import of foreign seeds, grains and plants to 
enhance the quality and variety of Canadian 
agricultural products. To support this kind of 
international exchange, Letellier advocated 
the establishment of agronomic institutes. 
These institutes, along with institutions of 
higher education and technical training in 
agriculture, would supply the kind of 
specialists needed to direct agricultural 
development in Canada. 



13 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



Threats of contagious disease in cattle, this 
time originating in the United Kingdom and 
Europe, were averted in 1875-76 through 
conscientious monitoring of cattle imports at 
Canadian ports and strict quarantine 
measures. Importers supported these 
preventative measures. 

An invasion of grasshoppers devastated 
Manitoba crops in the summer of 1876. 
Letellier visited Manitoba to investigate the 
extent of the losses and lent $60,000 to 
affected farmers "to prevent actual 
starvation, and to enable the purchase of 
necessary seed grains". At the same time, 
Letellier was impressed by the potential for 
agriculture in Manitoba. 



Letellier was more of a politician than an 
administrator. But he was active in 
organizing funding and committees to ensure 
Canada's participation in the Philadelphia 
World's Fair of 1876. For the first time, 
Canadian industries and products were put 
on display internationally to promote trade. 



As lieutenant-governor, Letellier meddled 
in electoral contests and once outright 
refused to sign an order-in-council "on 
principle". Quebec's Attorney General at 
the time, Auguste-Real Angers, refused 
invitations to functions at Letellier's 
official residence, and eventually the 
mutual distrust between Letellier and 
Angers peaked when he dismissed the 
government over a controversial railway 
policy. The public approved of Letellier's 
stand on the issue, but his fellow Liberals 
in Ottawa, did not. Angers became 
Canada's seventh minister of agriculture 
in 1892. 



The department also had to contend with the 
effects of the gradual spread of the potato 
beetle eastward across Canada. In 1 876, the 
insects were found on steamers bound for 
Germany, and the Imperial government in the 
United Kingdom asked for an investigation 
by departmental officials into precautionary 
measures that could be taken in Canada to 
prevent the spread of the pest into Europe. 
The department recommended monitoring 
the situation at ports, while handpicking, 
crushing and poisoning insects and their eggs 
to help control their spread across Canada. 



14 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Charles Alphonse Pantaleon Pelletier 

January 26, 1877 - October 8, 1878 




15 



Charles Alphonse 
Pantaleon Pelletier 

(1837-1911) 

Birthplace 

Riviere-Ouelle, Lower Canada 

Federal Constituency 

Kamouraska (Quebec) 

Education 

College of Ste. Anne de la Pocatiere, 
Laval University, Military School 

Professional Background 

Called to the bar in 1860, practised law 
in Quebec City; director for Quebec and 
Charlevoix Navigation Co. and Quebec 
Fire Insurance Co. 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 



Political Career 

Pelletier's first election campaign was over 
before voters had a chance to have their say. 
Recruited by the Liberals and supported by 
Jean-Charles Chapais' longtime rival Luc 
Letellier de Saint-Just, Pelletier challenged 
Chapais in the first election for the House of 
Commons in 1867. Irregularities in voters' 
lists and rioting caused officials to refuse to 
hold the vote, denying Kamouraska 
constituents a representative for two years. 

Pelletier eventually won the seat in a special 
double by-election, held in 1 869 to select 
members for both the provincial and the 
federal governments. Pelletier sat as MP for 
Kamouraska until 1877. He also represented 
Quebec East in the Quebec national 
assembly from 1873 until dual representation 
was abolished in 1874. 

In 1877, Pelletier was appointed minister of 
agriculture and called to the Senate. His 
term as minister of agriculture ended with 
the defeat of the Liberal government in 
September 1878. 

Pelletier was selected speaker of the Senate 
in 1896 and served until 1901. He resigned 
from the Senate to accept an appointment as 
puisne judge of the Superior Court of 
Quebec in 1904. 

In 1908 he resigned from the Superior Court 
to serve as lieutenant-governor of Quebec 
until his death in Quebec City in 1911. 



Departmental Developments 

In 1877, Pelletier found it necessary to 
further modify the cattle quarantine 
regulations and ban the import of neat cattle, 
as well as cattle parts, straw, fodder or other 
products capable of carrying disease, in order 
to protect against rinderpest from England 
and other parts of Europe. Diligent 
quarantine efforts also helped prevent the 
introduction of contagious hog typhoid into 
Canada that year. 

By 1878, the department's annual report 
stated that "owing to the selection and care 
of our importers, and partly owing to our 
Cattle Quarantine establishments, no disease 
has been introduced into the country". The 
Imperial Government in the United Kingdom 
found Canada's new inspection and 
quarantine system so reliable in preventing 
the spread of contagious animal diseases that 
Canada was exempt from the provisions of 
imperial disease control legislation, which 
required all animals imported into the United 
Kingdom to be slaughtered immediately. 
Even 1 20 years ago, Canadian efforts to 
prevent and control animal disease facilitated 
international trade in livestock. 



16 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



Pelletier oversaw the creation of the first 
Dominion Council of Agriculture in 1877. 
Thirteen representatives of agricultural 
societies, provincial agriculture councils and 
commodity groups from every province were 
appointed to the council. Pelletier became 
honorary president, while David Christie, the 
speaker of the Senate from Paris, Ontario, 
was selected president. Twelve standing 
committees were formed to study timely 
agricultural concerns. 

Based on the department's success in 
promoting Canadian agriculture at the 1 876 
World's Fair in Philadelphia, Pelletier 
organized a Canadian exhibition for the 
Metropolitan Exhibition held in Sydney, 
Australia in 1877. Exhibitors and the 
department had little time to research what 
types of products might be suitable for 
Australian trade — some goods were shipped 
directly from Philadelphia to Sydney — but 
the exhibits, totalling 550 cubic tons of ocean 
freight, were well received. Some exhibits 
won prizes, while others helped spark trade 
in several industries and commodities. The 
total cost to the department was $26,433, a 
sum Pelletier called "moderate" in his annual 
report. 

Additional awards, trade opportunities and 
national recognition resulted from Canada's 
participation in a similar international 
exposition in Paris in 1878. 



Pelletier was a major in the 9th Battalion 
Voltigeurs de Quebec during the Fenian 
Raids of 1866. 

Pelletier founded Quebec's Parti National 
in 1872, a party that went on to form a 
nationalist government in Quebec under 
Honore Mercier in 1887. 

Adolphe Routhier, a lawyer from 
Kamouraska defeated by Pelletier in the 
1 869 election, wrote the French words of 
our national anthem: "O Canada! Terre 
de nos a'ieux!" 



17 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



John Carling 



September 25, 1885 - November 24, 1892 




18 



John Carling 

(1828-1911) 

Birthplace 

London, Upper Canada 

Federal Constituency 

London (Ontario) 

Education 

London Common School 

Professional Background 

President of Carling Brewing and Malting 
Co.; director of Great Western Railway. 
London-Port Stanley Railway and London- 
Huron-Bruce Railway 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



Political Career 

Carling inherited his family's brewing and 
malting company and was an established 
businessman long before he entered politics. 
He started as a city alderman in London in 
1854 and stayed in municipal politics for 
four years. He also represented London in 
the colonial legislature from 1857 until 
Confederation. In 1862 he was appointed 
receiver general. 

In the first general election after 
Confederation, Carling was elected to both 
Ontario's legislative assembly and the House 
of Commons, representing London. 
Provincially, he served as minister of 
agriculture and public works from 1867 to 
1871. He was re-elected as London's 
representative to the Ontario legislative 
assembly in 1871 but resigned in 1872 to 
concentrate on federal politics. 

Carling served as the federal MP for London 
from 1 867 to 1 874 but was defeated along 
with Macdonald's Conservative government 
in the 1874 general election. He was re- 
elected when the Conservatives regained 
power in 1878 and appointed to cabinet. 

Carling served as postmaster general from 
1882 to 1885 and minister of agriculture 
from 1885 to 1892. When he was defeated as 
an MP in the election of 1891. Carling was 
appointed to the Senate and continued to 



serve as minister of agriculture. He was re- 
elected MP for London in 1 892 and served as 
minister without portfolio from 1 892 to 1 894. 

Carling was recalled to the Senate in 1896, 
where he served until his death in 1911. 

Industry Issues 

In Carling's time, farmers urgently needed 
advanced agricultural knowledge to help 
them farm in new Canadian climates. Prairie 
farmers needed a spring wheat that would 
ripen before early western frosts; if the 
government could develop a superior baking 
wheat for this climate, opportunities for 
immigration and economic development 
would follow. Experimental stations in other 
countries and government stock farms in the 
Maritimes already had proved valuable in 
agricultural development. International trade 
also inspired agricultural research. For 
example, an American tariff on Canadian 
barley encouraged the development and 
promotion of a new malting barley for the 
British market. 



19 



Departmental Developments 

Disease control efforts of the period further 
underscored the need for experimental 
stations. The testing and development of 
vaccines for diseases such as anthrax 
required proper scientific laboratories and 
controlled test environments. 

After a 1889 convention of dairymen's 
associations in Ottawa, the department 
extended its activities to cover the dairy 
industry. Departmental bulletins, conventions 
and lectures educated farmers about 
manufacturing butter and cheese and feeding 
cattle for milk production. Uniform methods 
for processing dairy products improved their 
quality and enhanced their potential for 
export. Experimental dairy stations and 
systems of co-operative dairying were 
established in each province after 1891. 
A dairy school also was established at 
St-Hyacinthe, Quebec in 1892. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

Carling's legacy as minister of agriculture 
was the experimental farm research program. 
Based on a 1884 House of Commons 
committee's recommendation and research 
done by Professor William Saunders, the 
eventual director of the first experimental 
farms, the Experimental Farm Station Act 
was given royal assent in June 1886. 

The legislation was so well conceived that 
only minor amendments, mostly to establish 
additional farms or make administrative 
changes, were necessary for 110 years. 

The land for the central farm in Ottawa was 
purchased first, followed by sites for the 
other regional farms in Brandon, Manitoba; 
Indian Head, Northwest Territories (now 
Saskatchewan); Nappan, Nova Scotia; and 
Agassiz, British Columbia. The first research 
activities on the farms were testing crop 
varieties and cultural methods, and gathering 
information about climate conditions. Once 
they identified new crops for a region, 
researchers distributed samples of the 
improved varieties to local farmers and 
published information in public bulletins. 



India and the already-popular Red Fife wheat 
led to the development of Marquis wheat, 
world famous for its milling quality and high 
prairie yields. Indian corn and spring rye 
were developed as effective hay substitutes 
for use in years where the prairie hay crop 
was insufficient to feed livestock through the 
winter. Upwards of 12,000 seed samples 
were distributed to farmers and more than 
30,000 people were on the farms' mailing list 
for information. 

Thoroughbred livestock available from the 
farms for breeding also improved local dairy 
and beef herds. Carling took a keen interest 
in the farms' development and frequently 
visited the Ottawa property. 

Worth Noting 

• The French-speaking assistant to 
Canada's first dairy commissioner, 
Dr. James Robinson, was Jean-Charles 
Chapais, the son of Canada's first 
agriculture minister. 



Records from 1 890 show that the Central 
Experimental Farm in Ottawa was already 
experimenting with 300 varieties of potatoes, 
100 varieties of wheat, 100 varieties of oats 
and 80 varieties of barley. Crosses made in 
1892 between an early-ripening wheat from 



20 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Auguste-Real Angers 

December 7, 1892 - July 12, 1895 







& 







fcfe 




' If 7 

/ 

/ 

i 








r 




M 


V > 

/ , Canada 


/ vV 


> 'i 



21 



Auguste-Real Angers 

(1838-1919) 

Birthplace 

Quebec City, Lower Canada 

Federal Constituency 

Montmorency (Quebec) 

Education 

Nicolet College, Laval University (1888) 

Professional Background 

Called to the bar in 1 860, practised law in 
Quebec City; director of Credit Foncier 
Franco-Canadien and La Societe 
d' Administration Generate 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



Political Career 

Angers' political career began when he was 
elected to the legislative assembly of Quebec 
in 1 874 in a by-election for Montmorency. 
He was immediately appointed solicitor 
general in Boucher de Boucherville's 
government, and served until appointed 
attorney general in January 1876. Angers was 
also government leader in the assembly 
from 1875 to 1878. 

In 1878, the lieutenant-governor of Quebec, 
Luc Letellier de Saint- Just, dismissed 
Angers' government over a controversial 
railway policy. Angers became leader of the 
opposition, and in the next election the 
public supported Letellier's dismissal of the 
Conservatives. Angers lost his seat. 

Undeterred from public life, Angers was 
elected to represent Montmorency in the 
House of Commons in a February 1 880 by- 
election. In November, he resigned his seat 
to serve as puisne judge for the Superior 
Court of Quebec. In October 1 887, Angers 
resigned from the Superior Court to become 
lieutenant-governor of Quebec. This time it 
was Angers' turn to dismiss a government of 
which he did not approve, when Honore 
Mercier's nationalist government became 
tangled in a railway scandal of its own. 



In December 1892, Angers resigned as 
lieutenant-governor and was called to the 
Senate and appointed federal minister of 
agriculture. He served under the short-lived 
administrations of John Thompson and 
Mackenzie Bowell. Bowell's leadership on 
the Manitoba schools controversy so 
dissatisfied Angers that he resigned from 
cabinet in 1895. Angers briefly resumed his 
law practice but declined an appointment to 
the Supreme Court — he wasn't ready to end 
his political career just yet. 

After Charles Tupper replaced Bowell as 
Conservative leader and prime minister, 
Angers served briefly as president of the 
Privy Council from May to July 1 896. He 
subsequently resigned from the Senate to run 
for the House of Commons representing 
Quebec City in the general election of 1896. 
He failed to win the seat as Wilfrid Laurier's 
Liberals swept to power. Angers resumed his 
law practice in Montreal as head of the 
successful firm A. De Lorimier & Godin. He 
died in Montreal in 1919. 



22 



Industry Issues 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Minister Angers wanted to diversify 
Canadian agriculture. Mixed farming, he 
believed, offered the best protection for 
Canadian farmers and the broader agriculture 
industry against market fluctuations, poor 
growing conditions and other unforeseen 
obstacles. His 1893 trip to Manitoba and the 
Northwest Territories illustrated the need for 
farmers to look beyond wheat and grains. A 
combination of poor weather and low prices 
that summer adversely affected communities 
entirely dependent on grains. Mixed farming 
fostered home industries and offered settlers 
additional products to trade locally. Although 
Angers no longer had immediate responsibility 
for immigration, the well-being of new 
settlers in farm communities was still a 
concern. 

Canada's impressive presence at international 
exhibitions such as the 1893 World's Fair in 
Chicago proved that the country's agriculture 
industry was coming of age. The United 
Kingdom was starting to feel real agricultural 
competition from its former colony, thanks to 
superior training and research. The Central 
Experimental Farm's Agriculture Museum 
opened in 1895, with more than 12,000 
visitors each year. 



Disease control and animal inspection 
remained a priority, with new quarantine 
stations and inspection points established 
along the American boundary with the 
Northwest Territories in 1894. That same 
year, bovine tuberculosis emerged as a 
serious threat to animal health. A tuberculin 
test developed at the Central Experimental 
Farm was used across Canada and at points 
of entry to control disease by identifying sick 
animals for isolation and slaughter. 

Canadian cattle exports faced a serious 
setback during Angers' tenure. In October 
1892, the British government imposed an 
embargo on Canadian cattle because of 
suspected pleuro-pneumonia in cattle shipped 
from Montreal. False rumours also circulated 
in the United Kingdom that cattle from the 
United States, where pleuro-pneumonia did 
exist, were imported into Manitoba and the 
Northwest Territories without inspection. 
Despite the department's best efforts to 
investigate and disprove the allegations, the 
British government refused to relent on its 
embargo. 



Angers continued the work begun by Carling 
to promote and regulate Canada's emerging 
dairy industry. The Dairy Products Act of 
1 893 provided for the branding of dairy 
products and prohibited the sale of filled or 
imitation cheese. By 1895, the Dairy Branch 
was also carrying out non-dairy activities, 
such as investigating the export possibilities 
for Canadian hay, apples, bacon and other 
pork products. Successful shipments of 
butter and cheese to British ports were made 
possible because the department fitted 
commercial steamers with insulated and 
refrigerated food storage chambers. 
Experimental shipments of other fruits and 
preserved eggs, which also needed these 
cold-storage facilities, weren't as successful. 

Angers was responsible for the first tobacco 
grown on Canadian farms in 1893. 
Departmental research identified the ideal 
varieties and growing techniques for use in 
eastern Ontario and western Quebec. 



23 



1*1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Walter Humphries Montague 

December 21, 1895 - January 5, 1896 
and January 15, 1896 - July 8, 1896 







Walter Hump hies Montague 
1895-1896 



. 



//>/* 



'Cafiada 



24 



Walter Humphries 
Montague 

(1858-1915) 

Birthplace 

Adelaide Township, Canada West 

Federal Constituency 

Haldimand-Monck (Ontario) 

Education 

Woodstock College; Victoria University, 
Cobourg; Toronto School of Medicine 

Professional Background 

Obtained MD in 1 882 and practised 
medicine in Dunnville, Ontario and 
Winnipeg, Manitoba 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



Political Career 

Montague's political career started slowly. 
He lost his bid to represent Monck in the 
Ontario legislative assembly's general 
election of 1883. In 1887, he was elected to 
the House of Commons for Haldimand, 
Ontario — but the election was declared void. 
Later in the year, he won a second election, 
which was also plagued by controversy and 
voided in court. Montague was defeated 
again in a by-election in 1889. 

Montague finally won the Haldimand seat in 
a 1890 by-election. He was re-elected as MP 
for Haldimand (later Haldimand-Monck) in 
1891, 1895 and 1896. He also served as vice- 
president of the Conservative Union of 
Ontario in 1892. 

Montague was appointed to the Privy 
Council in 1894 and served as minister 
without portfolio from December 1894 to 
March 1895. and as secretary ol state from 
March to December 1S95. In December 
1895, he was appointed minister of 
agriculture. 



Montague resigned briefly in January 1 896 
as one of the cabinet ministers Prime 
Minister Mackenzie Bowell called a "nest of 
traitors" for deserting the government in 
protest of Bowell's inaction on the Manitoba 
schools issue. Montague returned to cabinet 
when the controversy passed, but the 
Conservative caucus was slowly unravelling. 
Charles Tupper (the Conservatives' fifth 
leader since Macdonald's death in 1891) 
became prime minister before the 1896 
election, but the Conservative government 
was soundly defeated by Wilfrid Laurier's 
triumphant Liberals. 

Montague lost his Haldimand-Monck seat in 
the 1900 election and left politics to return to 
his medical practice. In 1908 he moved to 
Winnipeg, and five years later he again ran 
lor public office. In November 1913 
Montague was elected to the legislative 
assembly of Manitoba, representing 
Kildonan-St. Andrews. He was re-elected in 
1914 and appointed minister of public works 
in the Roblin government from November 
1913 to May 1915. Montague died in 
Winnipeg in 1915. 



25 



Accomplishments as Minister Worth Noting 

Montague's seven-month tenure as minister • Montague's predecessor, Angers, also 
coincided with a turbulent period in the life resigned as minister of agriculture to 

of his government. As a result, his legacy is protest Prime Minister Bowell's 

one of maintenance of existing programs leadership, 

rather than considerable policy or 
organizational innovation. 



26 



■+■ 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Sydney Arthur Fisher 

July 13, 1896 - October 6, 1911 




27 



Sydney Arthur Fisher 

(1850-1921) 

Birthplace 

Montreal, Canada East 

Federal Constituency 

Brome (Quebec) 

Education 

McGill University and Trinity College, 
Cambridge (B A, 1871) 

Professional Background 

Owner-operator of Alva Farm in Knowlton, 
Quebec; president of Montreal Ensilage and 
Stock Feeding Association; founder and 
president of Quebec Fruit Growers' 
Association; member of Canadian National 
Livestock Association, Provincial Dairy 
Association and Brome Agricultural 
Association; charity board member and 
founder of arts organizations 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 



Political Career 

Fisher was elected as a Liberal MP in 1882 
and served until he lost by a majority of one 
in the face of Prime Minister Macdonald's 
Conservatives' final electoral victory in 
1891. Fisher accepted an appointment to the 
Quebec Council of Agriculture. Five years 
later, he was re-elected when Laurier's 
Liberals swept to power. His passion and 
experience as a farmer and agricultural 
activist as well as an MP made him a logical 
choice for agriculture minister. He served as 
an MP and as minister of agriculture for the 
next 15 years. 

Laurier and his Liberal party — including 
Fisher — lost the 1911 general election over 
the reciprocity issue. Fisher retired from 
public life and died in Ottawa in 1921. 



Industry Issues 

In 1896, the public land once available in the 
American west was closed. The Canadian 
Prairies became the "Last Best West" and a 
new era of settlement and agricultural 
expansion began. Rising prices and 
inexpensive shipping created a world market 
for hard spring wheat, and prairie production 
grew from 29 to 209 million bushels a year. 
Marquis wheat, developed mostly by Charles 
Saunders (son of experimental farms director 
William Saunders), was introduced in 1907 
and soon accounted for 90 per cent of prairie 
production. Western settlement and 
development led to the creation of two new 
provinces, Saskatchewan and Alberta, in 1905. 

In 1901, bad management kept the CPR from 
moving more than a third of a bumper wheat 
crop before freeze-up on Lake Superior. 
National Policy tariffs prevented western 
farmers from buying inexpensive American 
machinery and manufactured goods. 
Dissatisfied farmers formed co-operatives to 
advance their political and business interests. 
By the fall of 1910, grievances climaxed as 
1 ,000 farmers staged the "March on Ottawa" 
to protest government inaction on tariffs, 
freight rates and land policies. Laurier 
drafted a reciprocity (free trade) agreement 
with the Americans, but both Laurier and 
farmers were defeated when eastern business 
interests and blue-collar workers would not 
support reciprocity. 



28 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



Fisher's legacy as agriculture minister 
includes a major expansion of the scope and 
activities of the department. Amendments to 
the Experimental Farms Stations Act in 1900 
extended the branch farm system and new 
research stations opened in every province. 
The Tobacco Branch was organized in the 
department in 1905 to encourage and 
develop this new industry. 

In 1 897, the Canadian and American 
departments of agriculture agreed to co- 
operate in the reporting and tracking of 
livestock diseases. The new co-operative 
inspection agreement significantly increased 
livestock trade between the two countries. In 
1899, the department appointed a livestock 
commissioner. A biological laboratory was 
established on the Central Experimental Farm 
in 1902 to research animal disease control. 

After 1907, the Meat and Canned Foods Act 
provided for the inspection of meat packing 
plants and canning factories. Departmental 
veterinarians and inspectors have worked at 
food establishments ever since. 

A seed laboratory was established in Ottawa 
in 1903 to test seeds for their germination 
and purity. The Seed Control Act of 1905 
allowed the government to regulate the 
quality of Canadian seeds under the authority 
of a new seed commissioner. Additional seed 
laboratories across Canada continued this work. 



The Grains Act (1900) regulated and 
provided inspectors for the western wheat 
industry. 

An Animal Contagious Diseases Act 
amendment (1904) compensated livestock 
owners whose animals were slaughtered to 
control the spread of disease. 

The Act Respecting the Incorporation of 
Livestock Records (1900, 1905) created 
one record association to validate 
credentials for each breed, making it 
easier to export purebred animals. 

The Fruit Marks Act (1901) standardized 
fruit grades and grade marks on fruit 
packaging, and introduced inspection at 
ports to facilitate commercial production 
and trade. 

New dairy products legislation (1903) 
prohibited margarine and introduced 
quality control regulations for butter and 
cheese to facilitate exports. 

The Cold Storage Act (1907) and similar 
regulations encouraged the use of public 
cold storage warehouses and refrigerated 
shipping for dairy products and fruit. 

The San Jose Scale Act ( 1 898) and 
Destructive Insect and Pest Act (1910) 
introduced inspection and quarantine to 
prevent pests and disease spreading 
through fruit trees and crops. 



The prairie protest movement that was 
active during Fisher's tenure started the 
political careers of two future Liberal 
ministers of agriculture: Thomas Crerar, 
founder of what became the United Grain 
Growers, and W.R. Motherwell, founder 
of the Territorial (Saskatchewan) Grain 
Growers' Association. 

Reports show that the government was 
recovering costs for services even at the 
turn of the century. Fees charged for 
livestock inspection ranged from two 
cents to one dollar per animal. 



29 



■+i 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Martin Burrell 

October 16, 1911 - October 12, 1917 




30 



Martin Burrell 

(1858-1938) 

Birthplace 

Faringdon, Berkshire, England 

Federal Constituency 

Yale-Cariboo/Yale (British Columbia) 

Education 

St. John's College, Hurstpierpont, England; 
Queen's University (LLD (Hon.), 1928) 

Professional Background 

Bank clerk; fruit farmer in Niagara and 
Grand Forks, B.C.; lecturer for Farmers' 
Institute and Ontario Fruit Growers' 
Association; member, B.C. Board of 
Horticulture; B.C. fruit commissioner; 
lecturer in England 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



"Our laws would be better — there 
would be less bitterness in our strife — // 
we were oftener moved by a sincere 
desire to lighten the work and brighten 
the lives of those, who, in the silence 
and solitude of the fields and the woods, 
are doing the foundation work of our 
common country. " 

— Martin Burrell, speech in the House of 
Commons, 1913 



Political Career 

Burrell began his political career as mayor of 
Grand Forks in 1903. He was elected to the 
House of Commons as MP for Yale-Cariboo 
on his second attempt in 1908. Burrell's 
background as a fruit farmer and horticulturalist 
in both Ontario and B.C. gave him a 
different perspective from prairie wheat 
farmers'. In the 1911 election, he opposed 
free trade — a position that brought his 
Conservative party into power. Prime 
Minister Robert Borden appointed Burrell 
minister of agriculture. 

Burrell served as an MP until 1920. But by 
the election of 1917, his health had 
deteriorated and he could no longer handle 
the demands of the agriculture portfolio. The 
face of the Borden government changed to 
reflect the increasingly serious consequences 
of the First World War. Party lines had 
blurred and partisanship was on hold: 
Borden masterminded a coalition Union 
government dedicated to conscription, 
wartime prohibition and the elimination of 
political patronage. 

The new government agenda needed a new 
team to execute wartime policy, and in the 
subsequent cabinet adjustments, Burrell left 
the agriculture portfolio to become secretary 
of state and minister of mines from October 
1917 until December 1919 (after the end of 



the war). Burrell also served as minister of 
customs and inland revenue (December 1919 
to July 1920) before quitting politics in 1920. 

After his public life, Burrell served as 
librarian for the Library of Parliament until 
his death in 1938. 

Industry Issues 

A major drought in Palliser Triangle in 1913 
and 1914 slowed once-prosperous prairie 
wheat production to a comparative trickle. 
But then came a blessing in disguise: the 
First World War. With Russia unable to 
export, world demand for North American 
wheat raised grain prices to a level 
previously unseen and new crops, such as 
flax, could be grown profitably. Burrell 
called for an all-out war effort and Canadian 
farmers responded. Even as yields fell later 
in the war, world consumers accepted what 
they believed were temporarily higher prices 
and kept grain production profitable for 
farmers. 

Departmental Developments 

The Census and Statistics Office was 
transferred to the Department of Trade and 
Commerce in 1912. The Publications Branch 
was created to distribute information, handle 
correspondence and, eventually, maintain a 
departmental library. 



31 



The department launched educational and 
marketing campaigns to inspire the war 
effort — for example, wool growers, whose 
product was in demand for military 
uniforms, learned to grade and pack wool 
and to form co-operative marketing 
associations. Department officials were in 
charge of securing supplies of hay, oats and 
grain for wartime food production and 
shipment overseas. Telegraphic market 
reporting between Canada and Europe 
improved trade after 1915. 

When a rust epidemic in 1916 threatened the 
supply of seed for the next year's crop, a 
seed purchasing commission was appointed 
to purchase, clean, store and distribute the 
necessary inspected seed grain at cost. 

The war affected the department's research. 
By 1916, more than 100 employees from 
experimental farms alone had enlisted in the 
military, threatening the quality of the 
research service. Still, researchers overcame 
a threat to Canadian cheese production 
during the war. Rennet imported from eastern 
Europe was no longer available. Pepsin, 
developed in 1916 at Ontario's Finch Dairy 
Station, proved to be an effective alternative. 

The experimental farms started a publicity 
division in 1915 to organize exhibits and 
promote their research work. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

• The Agricultural Instruction Act (1913) 
offered $10 million to the provinces over 
a 10-year period to establish and improve 
agricultural colleges and other forms of 
agriculture-related training. The 
Agricultural Instruction Branch was 
formed to administer these programs. 

• In 1914, a system of certified field 
inspection and tuber examination for 
potato exports not only lifted an 
American embargo, but also improved 
the quality of seed stock and exports. 
Today's seed potato certification program 
evolved from these measures. 

• The Municipal Testing Order (1914) 
fought bovine tuberculosis by licensing 
dairies and encouraging communities to 
test all dairy cattle every two years. 

• First attempts at co-operative marketing, 
quality control regulations and inspection 
for eggs were implemented. 

• An Act Respecting Livestock (1917) 
authorized the minister of agriculture to 
supervise the management, fees and 
conditions of public stockyards. 



Worth Noting 

• In 1915, a future experimental station in 
the Abitibi district served as a prisoner- 
of-war camp. Prisoners cleared 155 acres 
of forest and 2,500 cords of wood were 
sold for pulp. 

• Burrell was trapped and seriously injured 
in the 1916 fire in the Parliament 
Buildings. 

• Between 1924 and 1938, Burrell wrote a 
weekly literary column, Literature and 
Life, for the Ottawa Journal. His articles 
became the basis for two books: Betwixt 
Heaven and Charing Cross (Toronto: 
1928) and Crumbs are Also Bread 
(Toronto: 1934). 



32 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Thomas Alexander Crerar 

October 12, 1917 - June 11, 1919 




33 



Thomas Alexander 
Crerar 

(1876-1975) 

Birthplace 

Molesworth, Ontario 

Federal Constituencies 

Marquette, Brandon, Churchill (Manitoba) 

Education 

Portage la Prairie Collegiate 

Professional Background 

Rural schoolteacher; grain farmer and 
manager of Farmers' Elevator Co-op; 
president of Grain Growers Grain Company 
(later United Grain Growers Limited); 
director of Great West Life Assurance 
Company, Canada Steamship Lines Ltd., 
Algoma Steel Corp. Ltd. and Modern 
Dairies Ltd. 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal (Unionist) (1917-21), Progressive 
(1921-25), Liberal (1925-66) 

"In T.A. Crerar, Minister of Agriculture 
for the Unionists, the farmers had a 
leader who even wrote his ministerial 
letters on United Grain Growers' 
paper. " 

— Canadian historian Desmond Morton, 
A Short History of Canada 



Political Career 

Crerar developed his taste for politics as the 
first reeve of Silver Creek, Manitoba. He 
entered the national political scene when he 
was elected as MP for Marquette in 1917. 

Crerar's impressive credentials as a farmer, 
grain buyer and rural activist made him an 
ideal candidate for the agriculture portfolio. 
He was appointed minister of agriculture in 
October 1917, serving in a wartime coalition 
(Union) government dedicated to non- 
partisanship and to the effective channelling 
of Dominion resources toward the war effort 
in Europe. 

The Canadian Council of Agriculture drafted 
a farmers' platform in 1916. Farmers 
proposed a different national policy: 
reciprocity, lower freight rates, bank reforms, 
railway nationalization and a graduated 
income tax. In 1918, farmers were furious at 
the cancellation of their sons' exemption 
from conscription. 

Minister Crerar was listening and fought for 
farmers' interests around the cabinet table. 
But he didn't succeed. When Finance 
Minister Thomas White's 1919 Budget again 
fell short of farmers' expectations, Crerar 
quit the cabinet. 

Farmers' parties were governing Ontario, 
Manitoba and Alberta. While Crerar was 
reluctant to support these political 



movements — he was a pragmatist and 
recognized the appeal of these policies to the 
soft Liberal vote — his party wasn't listening 
to farmers. Crerar worked to form a national 
farmers' party, the Progressives, and became 
its leader in 1920. 

In the 1921 election, Crerar was re-elected as 
an MP, and the Progressives won 65 seats in 
Ontario and the West. Crerar refused 
opposition leader status, hoping instead for 
the accommodation of farmers' policies 
within the government agenda. The strategy 
didn't work, and his party became divided 
over policy. Frustrated, Crerar resigned as 
party leader in 1922. He sat as an MP until 
the end of the 14 th parliament but didn't run 
in the general election of 1925. 

After a brief absence from politics, Crerar re- 
emerged as a Liberal cabinet minister under 
King in 1929. He served as minister of 
railways and canals from December 1929 
until August 1930 and was re-elected as an 
MP in a 1930 by-election for Brandon. Later 
in 1930, he was defeated in the general 
election that removed Mackenzie King's 
Liberals from power. 

In 1935, Crerar became MP for Churchill 
and returned to cabinet as minister of mines, 
of immigration and colonization, and of the 
interior and as superintendent-general of 
Indian affairs (October 1935 to November 
1936). His appointment was later simplified 
to minister of mines and resources 



34 



(December 1936 to April 1945). As the 
cabinet minister responsible for natural 
resources, Crerar was an important decision- 
maker in King's cabinet during the Second 
World War. 

Crerar was re-elected as MP for Churchill in 
1940 and sat in the House of Commons until 
the dissolution of 19 lh parliament in April 
1945. King called him to the Senate, where 
he served until his resignation in May 1966. 
Crerar died in 1975. 

Industry Issues 

Prompted by the soaring world demand for 
Canadian wheat at a time of declining prairie 
yields, the government closed the Winnipeg 
Grain Exchange in 1917 and created a single 
wheat board to market the Canadian product. 
Wheat prices soared to $3.15 per bushel, 
offering farmers relative prosperity despite 
the psychological strain of watching their 
sons go to war. After the 1919 harvest, the 
wheat board was dissolved and free 
enterprise returned to prairie farming. 



Departmental Developments 

Matters unrelated to agriculture were 
removed from the department's jurisdiction 
in 1917: exhibitions, patents, copyrights, 
trademarks, public health and quarantines 
were transferred to the Department of 
Immigration and Colonization. 

Oleomargarine was prohibited as a butter 
substitute under the Dairy Industry Act 
(1903). But in 1917, the Canada Food Board 
passed an order permitting the use of 
oleomargarine under the provisions of the 
War Measures Act. The department 
supervised its manufacture and sale. 

Near the end of the war, livestock feed 
contaminants became an issue — mill feeds 
were being mixed with harmful weed seeds. 
In 1918, the Seed Branch began microscopic 
studies of allegedly contaminated feeds. 
These investigations placed pressure on feed 
suppliers to improve the overall quality and 
accuracy of labelling on feeds offered for 
sale in Canada. 



Worth Noting 

• Crerar is the only minister to have 
resigned over farmers' issues. 

• In 1974, Crerar became the first 
politician recognized as a companion of 
the Order of Canada. 



At the end of the war, Canadian breeders had 
difficulty shipping cattle to the United States 
because of Canada's inadequate tuberculosis 
control record. The department responded 
with regulations providing for accredited 
tuberculosis-free herds in September 1919. 



35 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Simon Fraser Tolmie 

August 12, 1919 - December 29, 1921 
and July 13, 1926 - September 25, 1926 




36 



Simon Fraser Tolmie 

(1867-1937) 

Birthplace 

Victoria, British Columbia 

Federal Constituency 

Victoria (British Columbia) 

Education 

Ontario Veterinary College, Guelph; 
University of British Columbia (LLD (Hon.)) 

Professional Background 

Farmer and breeder of purebred cattle in 
Victoria, British Columbia; chief inspector, 
B.C. Health of Animals Branch; Dominion 
livestock commissioner for B.C.; Dominion 
organizer for the Conservative Party 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



Political Career 



Tolmie was elected MP for Victoria in 1917 
and served in the Union government under 
prime ministers Robert Borden and Arthur 
Meighen. He was appointed minister of 
agriculture after the resignation of Thomas 
Crerarin 1919. 



The Conservatives lost the 1921 general 
election to Mackenzie King's Liberals. 
Tolmie retained his seat but lost his cabinet 
portfolio. Tolmie again held the agriculture 
portfolio for a few months in the summer of 
1926 when Meighen's Conservatives were 
asked to form a government during the 
King-Byng constitutional crisis. King's 
Liberals were re-elected in 1926 and Tolmie 
returned to the opposition benches. 

Tolmie became active in provincial politics 
and was elected leader of the B.C. 
Conservative Party in November 1926. He 
resigned his federal seat in 1928 and was 
elected to represent Saanich in the legislative 
assembly of British Columbia. He became 
premier of British Columbia and minister of 
railways until November 1933, when his 
government lost the election and he lost his 
seat. Tolmie was re-elected to represent 
Victoria in the House of Commons in a 1936 
by-election but died in office in 1937. 



Industry Issues 

The Prairies had a problem: declining 
productivity. Farmers were beginning to 
experience serious crop failures from their 
fast-depleting soils. And as world market 
conditions returned to normal after the First 
World War, grain prices plummeted to 45 per 
cent of their wartime peak within two years. 
Buoyed by their relative prosperity several 
years earlier, many prairie farmers had 
heavily invested in land and machinery, only 
to see their industry falter. Farmers' political 
parties were in power in Ontario, Manitoba 
and Alberta, and the federal government was 
under pressure to improve farmers' fortunes 
or risk losing their votes. 

Departmental Developments 

Once the war ended, the department's 
research work, previously limited by 
employee absences and diffused by unique 
wartime demands, resumed at full strength. 
But new staffing challenges emerged. As the 
Canadian economy strengthened, technically 
trained employees were often lost to the 
private sector, where salaries were higher. 
Jobs were plentiful and, unfortunately for the 
department, Canadian universities were only 
just beginning to produce agriculture 
graduates. 



37 



With the war effort over, the department 
could discontinue some areas of research and 
begin new projects. The Seed Purchasing 
Commission, for example, was no longer 
needed to guarantee stock in peacetime. 
New research activities investigated 
everything from binder twine to sunflowers. 
The Horticulture Division was expanded 
and began investigating not only fruit and 
vegetable culture, but also ornamental 
gardening, greenhouses and canning. The 
Fruit Branch was created to oversee the 
marketing, grading, inspection and transport 
of fruits for export. New botanical 
laboratories were established at branch 
farms, and new experimental stations and 
substations were established according to 
research needs. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

• A 1920 federal-provincial agreement 
established that grading dairy products 
for export was within federal jurisdiction, 
while grading for home consumption was 
a provincial concern. 

• Grading was introduced for eggs and 
hogs, in consultation with industry. These 
quality-control measures helped exporters 
obtain premium prices, particularly for 
bacon-type hogs in the British market. 

• Regulations were also passed for the 
inspection, grading and sale of 
commercial feeds, fertilizers and 
vegetables. 



Worth Noting 

• In 1926, the Agassiz Experimental Farm 
received worldwide publicity from an 
egg-laying contest when a bird owned 
by the University of British Columbia 
produced a world record 35 1 eggs in 
365 days. 



Market information, both national and 
international, became more important as the 
agriculture industry expanded. The 
department assembled telegraph services for 
daily markets and interstockyard 
communication. It created weekly reports 
and distributed them through the Canadian 
Press wire and by regular mail. Newspapers 
and other organizations used these reports 
and services to disseminate standardized, 
reliable market information. 



Performance testing was introduced for 
poultry. Department-sponsored 
inspections and egg-laying contests 
motivated producers to improve flock 
quality and performance. 

Under 1920 amendments to the Criminal 
Code, the minister of agriculture was 
assigned responsibility for horse racing. 
RCMP officers under departmental 
supervision enforced regulations at 
racetracks. 



38 



1*1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



U^SA 



William Richard Motherwell 

December 29, 1921 - June 28, 1926 
and September 25, 1926 -August 7, 1930 



'// 



m ■ 




- ~\' 



39 



William Richard 
Motherwell 

(1860-1943) 

Birthplace 

Perth, Canada West 

Federal Constituencies 

Regina, Melville (Saskatchewan) 

Education 

Ontario Agricultural College, Guelph (1882); 
University of Saskatoon (LLD (Hon.) 1928) 

Professional Background 

Farmer; secretary of Abernethy school 
district; magistrate of the peace for the 
Northwest Territories; founder and president 
of Central Canada Seed Growers 
Association; co-founder and president of 
Territorial (later Saskatchewan) Grain 
Growers' Association 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 

"Motherwell is not what I call a 
political farmer. He has been in politics 
for many years, but during all those 
years he has always been regarded as a 
good farmer, even among his 
neighbours; and this is the acid test. " 
— Yorkton, Saskatchewan banker, as quoted in 
the Country Guide and Nor-West Farmer, 1941 



Political Career 

Although he was born and educated in 
Ontario, Motherwell's economic and political 
roots took hold in the wheat fields of 
Saskatchewan. He ran unsuccessfully to 
represent Qu'Appelle North in Northwest 
Territories assembly in 1894 and 1896. But 
after the CPR failed to transport prairie 
wheat to lake ports before freeze-up in 1901, 
Motherwell founded the Territorial Grain 
Growers' Association, took the CPR to court, 
and lobbied for legislation to curb railway 
and line elevator monopolies. This success 
led to his election to the Saskatchewan 
assembly in 1905. 

Motherwell was Saskatchewan's first 
commissioner of agriculture from 1905 to 
1909, and its first minister of agriculture 
from 1909 to 1918. As minister, Motherwell 
initiated co-operative schemes to manage 
creameries, grain marketing and hail 
insurance. He supported research into prairie 
dry belt cultivation and oversaw the founding 
of the college of agriculture at the new 
University of Saskatoon in 1908. Motherwell 
was also provincial secretary between 1905 
and 1912. He served as a member of the 
assembly almost continuously until his 
resignation in 1918 over a school language 
controversy. 



Motherwell continued his political career in 
federal politics. Defeated in a by-election for 
Assiniboia in 1919, he was elected as MP for 
Regina from 1921 to 1925 and for Melville 
from 1925 to 1940. In 1921, Motherwell was 
the only Liberal MP from Alberta or 
Saskatchewan and a natural candidate for 
minister of agriculture, given his experience. 
He served until 1930, except when the 
Conservatives held power during the 
King-By ng constitutional crisis of 1926. 

By 1930, the Liberals were in as much 
trouble as the prairie economy. They lost the 
1930 general election, but Motherwell 
continued to be active in agricultural issues 
as an opposition MP through the Depression. 
When he retired in 1 940 at age 80, he 
reflected that his farm took more out of him 
than politics. He died in Regina in 1943. 



40 



Industry Issues 



Departmental Developments 



Worth Noting 



The 1920s brought rapid technological 
change. But with limited resources, farmers 
couldn't test new machinery, seeds or 
techniques without considerable risk. They 
needed non-partisan departmental research to 
keep up. 

After several years of prairie crop losses, a 
conference on rust control for wheat was 
held in September 1924. Researchers from 
the experimental farms, the National 
Research Council, and Canadian and 
American universities co-operated to found 
the Dominion Rust Research Laboratory at 
the Manitoba Agricultural College in 
Winnipeg. New rust-resistant varieties of 
wheat, oats and other cereals were 
developed. 

After a bountiful harvest in 1928, the Wheat 
Pool had an excess of wheat to sell. The 
pool-guaranteed price paid to farmers was no 
longer competitive on the world market; a 
market correction was inevitable. Farmers 
and other businesspeople cancelled orders 
and cut consumption. Inventories were large 
and terms of credit came due. The stage was 
set for an economic downturn — the drought 
of 1929 only served to make things official. 



In 1923, the British embargo against 
Canadian cattle ended, providing new export 
options for Canadian producers. Departmental 
veterinarians supervised quarantines and 
inspections and accompanied the shipments of 
cattle overseas. To facilitate cattle exports to 
the United States, Canada adopted a new 
restricted areas plan to control tuberculosis. 
Other supervised and accredited herd plans 
registered cattle free of disease and suitable for 
breeding and export. 

Despite the department's best efforts, foot 
and mouth disease from the United Kingdom 
penetrated Canadian livestock. By 1927, 
rabies also crossed the Canadian border from 
the United States. Sheep scab, however, was 
successfully eradicated. 

In 1923, bacteriology became a division of 
the Experimental Farms Service. By 1929, 
186 illustration (experimental project) 
stations were established across Canada. 

The Agricultural Economics Branch, formed 
in 1929, was a first: never before had a 
government department focused so intently 
on economics and the integrated management 
of scientific and financial issues. 



In 1882, Motherwell became one of the 
first graduates of the Ontario Agricultural 
College. 

Motherwell was recommended for the 
Saskatchewan agriculture portfolio in 
Premier Walter Scott's cabinet by some 
of the CPR staff he took to court for 
mismanagement and monopolistic 
practices. 



The shared field of agriculture policy continued 
to require federal-provincial co-ordination to 
maintain quality standards. Federal grading 
regulations developed for international trade 
were extended to interprovincial trade by 
enabling provincial legislation. 



41 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Robert Weir 

August 8, 1930 - October 23, 1935 










' 



,*i^ 









.< A 



Cerf>a$a 



/ / 



42 



Robert Weir 

(1882-1939) 

Birthplace 

Wingham, Ontario 

Federal Constituency 

Melfort (Saskatchewan) 

Education 

University of Toronto (BA, 1911) 

Professional Background 

Teacher in Huron County, Ontario and 
Regina, Saskatchewan; actuary with 
Confederation Life; major, 78 lh Battalion, 
Canadian Expeditionary Force; 
Saskatchewan public school inspector; 
farmer and breeder of horses, cattle and hogs 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



Political Career 

Robert Weir was elected MP for Melfort in 
the general election of 1930 and served the 
department during one of the most challenging 
periods in Canadian agricultural history. 

The Depression was a difficult time to be in 
government. Communist organizers agitated 
in prairie relief camps and orchestrated the 
"On to Ottawa" trek to protest the 
Conservative government's policies. 
Established Tories and business leaders 
deserted Prime Minister R.B. Bennett and his 
social policies to organize their own 
Reconstruction party, which aimed to reform 
capitalism. The Co-operative Commonwealth 
Federation (CCF) party gained strength and 
popularity in Weir's Saskatchewan, while the 
Social Credit party dominated the political 
agenda in Alberta. Bennett's Depression- 
fighting tariffs hurt more than helped the 
economy. 

Weir lost both his seat and his portfolio when 
the Bennett government was defeated in 1935. 
He died in Weldon, Saskatchewan in 1939. 



Industry Issues 

Some regions and commodities continued to 
expand at a satisfactory level during the 
Depression. But the prairie wheat pool was 
ruined when its payments to farmers exceeded 
the world price for wheat in 1929. The 
Conservatives kept it alive with secret 
subsidies, and Bennett gave $20 million in 
emergency relief to ailing prairie farmers 
in 1930. ' 

Prairie winds began lifting topsoil in 1931. 
The grasshoppers came in 1932 and in 1933 
drought, rust, hail and frost joined them in 
destroying the once-prosperous prairie wheat 
industry. Land that yielded 23 bushels per 
acre in 1928 was reduced to an unviable 
three bushels per acre in 1937. Wheat prices 
dropped from $1 .28 to 60 cents per bushel 
between 1928 and 1931. Many farmers quit 
or moved away from the Prairies. Previous 
ministers' fears about the vulnerability of 
prairie farmers who failed to diversify their 
operations were realized. 



43 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



Departmental researchers at Indian Head, 
Scott, Swift Current and Lethbridge taught 
farmers how to prevent soil drifting. Some of 
the less-viable land was returned to pasture, 
for which it was more suitable. The 
department also provided funding for soil 
surveys in dry areas. The new Soil Research 
Laboratory at Swift Current studied 
moisture, drifting and fertility. The new 
Forage Crops Laboratory at the University of 
Saskatchewan established an international 
reputation for breeding and genetic studies 
with grasses and legumes, as well as for 
teaching. 

Officials from several branches collaborated 
on a major grasshopper control campaign in 
1933. Working with the provinces, they 
succeeded in dramatically reducing crop 
losses caused by these pests. 

Between 1931 and 1933, the Agricultural 
Economics Branch conducted a farm power 
and machinery survey to compare the costs 
of horse versus tractor power. The survey 
was one of the first farm management and 
social change studies conducted in Canada. 



Weir's Prairie Farm Rehabilitation 
Administration Act passed in April 1935. It 
provided $1 million per year to help farmers 
solve their own problems in three ways: by 
improving cultural practices, conserving 
water supplies and changing land use. Other 
federal agencies and prairie provincial 
governments collaborated in these efforts. 
Originally, experimental farms staff 
administered the Act; today, a separate 
administration continues this work. 

Weir opposed centralizing all government 
research under the National Research 
Council (NRC), even though the rest of the 
members of the Privy Council committee 
studying the issue favoured the change. 
Rather than remove research from his 
department. Weir suggested a parallel 
agricultural research council. By 1934, 
committees involving agriculture were 
reorganized as joint committees of the 
department and the NRC. They also included 
representatives from industry, academia, 
other departments and provinces. This co- 
operative structure still exists in the form of 
the Canadian Agricultural Research Council. 



Weir was a First World War hero, 
wounded at Passchendaele. 

The department's 1932 annual report 
notes an increase in enquiries about 
ornamental horticulture, presumably 
because the unemployed had more time 
for home improvement. 

During the Depression, Newfoundlanders 
tried to help by sending salt cod to 
destitute prairie farmers. But prairie 
settlers didn't know what it was — some 
soaked it and used it to plug holes in 
their roofs! 



Jurisdictional debates arose over the federal 
government's right to establish standards for 
trade. In 1934, the Natural Products 
Marketing Act was declared unconstitutional 
for going beyond the federal government's 
jurisdiction in creating the single Dominion 
Marketing Board. 



44 



1*1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



James Garfield Gardiner 

November 4, 1935 - June 21, 1957 




45 



James Garfield 
Gardiner 

(1883-1962) 

Birthplace 

Farquhar (Huron County), Ontario 

Federal Constituency 

Melville (Saskatchewan) 

Education 

Manitoba College, Winnipeg (BA, 1911) 

Professional Background 

School principal; farmer 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 



"[Gardiner was] so single-minded in 
espousing western affairs that he 
frequently exasperated his colleagues... 
His faith in individual effort and in 
limited government... never wavered, 
and he consistently applied his ideas to 
building his province... through 
depression, war and reconstruction. 
Notably partisan, he held that a 
minister should be fully responsible and 
believed frankly in patronage. " 
— Biographer Norman Ward 



Political Career 

Gardiner won his first provincial by-election 
for Qu'Appelle North in 1914 and was re- 
elected to Saskatchewan's legislative 
assembly five times. He served as minister of 
highways (1922-26), minister of railways 
(1926-27), and treasurer (1926-27 and 1934- 
35). When Premier C.A. Dunning was called 
to the federal cabinet, Gardiner was chosen 
leader of the Saskatchewan Liberals and 
served as premier from 1926 to 1929. The 
Liberals catered to farmers and the ethnic 
community for support, but their affinity for 
patronage contributed to their electoral defeat 
in 1929. 

Gardiner sat as leader of the opposition 
through the early years of the Depression. 
The Liberals won the 1934 Saskatchewan 
election and Gardiner, now MLA for 
Melville, became premier for the second time 
in July 1934. 

Prime Minister Mackenzie King needed a 
new federal minister of agriculture and asked 
Gardiner to leave provincial politics to join 
him in Ottawa. Gardiner agreed and resigned 
as premier on November 1, 1935. The 
following January, he was elected MP for 
Melville. He was re-elected federally five 
times. 



In addition to his responsibilities in the 
agriculture portfolio, Gardiner served as 
minister of war services in 1940 and 1941. 
His political ambitions went beyond 
cabinet — he unsuccessfully contested the 
federal Liberal leadership in 1948. Gardiner's 
only defeat came during Diefenbaker's 
electoral sweep of the Prairies in 1958. He 
retired from politics and died in 1962. 

Industry Issues 

Gardiner continued efforts started by Weir to 
rejuvenate prairie soils and rebuild the prairie 
economy through farm assistance. The 
Second World War required leadership to 
secure a supply of agricultural products for 
Europe and for Canadian troops overseas. 
Canada had bumper crops after 1939, but the 
war-stricken United Kingdom could not buy 
products without a $1.5-million loan from 
the Canadian government. 

Until 1947, the agricultural supplies 
committee planned and managed food 
production and marketing. Commodity- 
specific boards conserved materials; secured 
seed; bought, sold and stored supplies; and 
licensed products for export. Feed freight 
assistance was implemented to overcome 
shortages in Eastern Canada. When world 
production and trade returned to normal after 
the war and prices dropped, an appointed 
board marketed farm products and provided 
subsidies and equalization payments to 
ensure adequate farm returns. 



46 



Departmental Developments 

In 1937, a major departmental reorganization 
grouped similar functions under one 
administrative head. Four operating 
services — production, marketing, 
experimental farms and science — were 
created in place of the previous nine 
branches. The separation of basic research 
activities (Science Service) from the applied 
research activities (Experimental Farms 
Service) caused some controversy and 
confusion. A fifth service, administration 
service, encompassed the Prairie Farms 
Rehabilitation Administration (PFRA), 
library, publicity and extension activities. 

Important rehabilitation research occurred at 
new district experimental substations across 
the Prairies. After 1935, the national soil 
survey committee, funded by the PFRA and 
consisting of provincial, departmental and 
university researchers, began analysing soil 
samples to better monitor and understand 
changing soil resources. With PFRA money 
and training, field shelterbelt associations 
planted hedges to prevent drifting and to 
protect buildings from high winds. 

When vegetable seed supplies were cut off 
during the war, experimental farms produced 
additional stock. Soybeans, sunflowers and 
rapeseed provided new forms of industrial 
oils. Milkweed was studied as a potential 
rubber substitute and as floss for marine life 



preservers. Researchers also advised 
Department of National Defence officials on 
the planting and maintenance of airfield 
grasses. 

When Newfoundland joined Confederation 
in 1949, the department gained a 
demonstration farm and agricultural school. 

In 1951, forest biologists and entomologists 
were almost moved to the Department of 
Resources and Development. To keep them 
in the department and improve service to 
industry, the Department of Agriculture 
created a new division of forest 
entomologists and plant pathologists to 
encourage co-operative research. 

When a serious foot and mouth disease 
outbreak hit Saskatchewan in 1952, the 
department realized that officials diagnosing 
the disease worked in a separate service from 
those administering quarantines and that this 
was inefficient. Gardiner ordered animal 
pathology moved from the Science Service 
to the Production Service. In 1956, plant 
protection moved to the Production Service 
lor similar reasons. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

• The Prairie Farm Assistance Act (1939) 
provided direct payments to farmers who 
suffered low yields through 
circumstances beyond their control. 

• The Wheat Acreage Reduction Act (1942) 
implemented grain delivery quotas for 
the first time to overcome wartime 
surpluses. Farmers were compensated for 
losses, while additional payments 
encouraged seeding coarse grains and 
extending summer fallow. 

• The Agricultural Prices Support Act 
(1944) created a board to market 
products and provided subsidies and 
equalization payments for farmers during 
the post-war transition. 

Worth Noting 

• Gardiner was the longest-serving cabinet 
minister in one portfolio (22 years). 

• The South Saskatchewan River dam, 
built during the Diefenbaker government 
to promote irrigation, is named after 
Gardiner. The reservoir it created is 
called Diefenbaker Lake. 



47 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Douglas Scott Harkness 

June 21, 1957 - October 10, 1960 




48 



Douglas Scott 
Harkness 

(1903-) 

Birthplace 

Toronto, Ontario 

Federal Constituency 

Calgary North (Alberta) 

Education 

University of Alberta (BA); 
University of Calgary (LLD (Hon.)) 

Professional Background 

Teacher; farmer; lieutenant colonel in Royal 

Canadian Artillery 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 

"He was the only person who could 
make both farmers and city folk mad in 
the same speech.. .He was against all 
forms of subsidies to farmers and you 
don 't say that sort of thing to farmers. 
Then he 'd go out and blast city people 
for trying to get low prices for 
agricultural goods when they already 
had the lowest priced food in the 
world. " 
— Alvin Hamilton 



Political Career 

Harkness returned to Calgary a hero after the 
Second World War, and was quickly elected 
MP for Calgary North in 1945. He was a 
popular local politician, re-elected for either 
Calgary North, East or Centre over nine 
successive elections. 

By June 1957, western farmers were 
unimpressed with the governing Liberals and 
blamed them for unsold grain stocks left 
sitting on the Prairies. After the election that 
month, John Diefenbaker's Conservatives 
formed a minority government with a margin 
of only seven seats. For the first time, 
Western Canadians dominated in Ottawa. 
Harkness became minister of both northern 
affairs and natural resources, and agriculture. 
Two portfolios soon proved onerous, and his 
Saskatchewan colleague Alvin Hamilton took 
over the northern affairs and natural 
resources portfolio a few months later. 

In 1958, Diefenbaker called another election 
and won an unprecedented 53.6 per cent of 
the popular vote, taking 208 seats in the 
biggest majority government ever. His 
government was popular with rural voters, 
which made it easier for Diefenbaker, 
Harkness and Hamilton, chair of the cabinet 
wheat committee and longtime agriculture 
policy activist, to introduce and implement 
an aggressive national agricultural program 
over the next two years. 



Harkness was effective but not popular as 
agriculture minister, so Diefenbaker moved 
Hamilton into agriculture and switched Harkness 
to the defence portfolio. Defence was a difficult 
assignment in the early 1960s given the Cold 
War, Diefenbaker's poor relations with the U.S. 
and the recent cancellation of the Avro Arrow 
aircraft project. Diefenbaker was always 
against nuclear arms, but after the Cuban 
missile crisis most Canadians saw a need for 
nuclear protection. When Diefenbaker refused 
Harkness' recommendation to arm Canadian 
missiles with nuclear warheads, a leadership 
crisis emerged in cabinet. Ministers wavered in 
their support for Diefenbaker, and Harkness 
resigned from cabinet on February 4, 1963. 

The Conservatives were defeated in the 
general election of 1963 but Harkness 
remained an MP until he retired in 1972. He 
still lives in Calgary. 

Industry Issues 

Agriculture was one of the few sectors not to 
benefit from the post-war boom. Despite the 
Conservatives' free enterprise rhetoric, 
Harkness' tenure was relatively interventionist. 
Harkness and Hamilton believed the long-term 
effects of their policies would help farmers 
adjust to changing market conditions. But faced 
with increasing pressure to help farmers over 
short-term financial crises, the government 
offered modest acreage payments. Farmers 
were not satisfied with this help, and expressed 
their frustration to Minister Harkness and the 
cabinet wheat committee through petitions and 
a march on Ottawa in March 1959. 



49 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



Harkness reorganized the department and 
reunited pure science with the experimental 
farms in the Research Branch. Production 
and marketing formed a second branch, and 
administration (including economics) formed 
a third. 

The Research Branch was organized 
geographically into research institutes, 
regional laboratories and branch farms. 
Senior scientists co-ordinated research on a 
problem rather than a discipline basis. 
Authority was decentralized among regional 
and institute officers so headquarters could 
focus on planning and development. 
Illustration stations were renamed 
experimental project farms and consolidated 
in order to better equip the most important 
facilities. 

The Department of Forestry was created in 
1 960 and incorporated the Forest Biology 
Division and its 10 regional laboratories. 



The Prairie Grain Advance Payments Act 
(1957) provided payments for harvested 
grain in storage while the Canadian 
Wheat Board disposed of surpluses from 
the early 1950s. 

The Agricultural Stabilization Act (1958) 
established a system of flexible 
guaranteed prices for key commodities 
based on a 10-year moving average 
formula. 

The Farm Credit Act (1959) established 
the Farm Credit Corporation to 
encourage and facilitate new farm 
investments. 

The Crop Insurance Act (1959) allowed 
the federal government to make direct 
contributions to provinces that 
established crop insurance schemes. 

The government intervened to help 
farmers deal with increasing freight rates 
and established a royal commission on 
rail transportation in 1959. 

The Humane Slaughter of Food Animals 
Act (1959) established standards to guide 
livestock processing establishments in 
dignified killing practices. 



Harkness' principal when he taught at 
Calgary's Crescent Heights High School 
in the early 1930s was William "Bible 
Bill" Aberhart, Alberta's famous Social 
Credit premier. 

Harkness received the George Medal in 
the Second World War for "courage, 
gallantry and devotion to duty of a higher 
order" during the Sicilian campaign. 

Douglas Harkness Community School in 
Calgary commemorates his accomplish- 
ments. 

Harkness was admitted to the Order of 
Canada in 1978. 



50 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Francis Alvin George Hamilton 

October 11, I960- April 22, 1963 




51 



Francis Alvin George 
Hamilton 

(1912- ) 

Birthplace 

Kenora, Ontario 

Federal Constituency 

Qu'Appelle/Qu'Appelle-Moose Mountain 
(Saskatchewan) 

Education 

Normal School, Saskatoon; University of 
Saskatchewan (BA, 1937, LLD (Hon.), 1989) 

Professional Background 

Teacher; flight lieutenant, Royal Canadian 
Air Force; Chairman, Resources and Industries 
Associates; partner, Baker Trading Co.; 
mining investor; writer/lecturer; consultant 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 

"...probably the most popular minister 
of agriculture in Canadian history... a 
true prairie radical and an able 
parliamentarian... " 

— Peter Newman, Renegade in Power: The 
Diefenbaker Years 

"If you let Alvin loose in a 40-acre field 
with just three cow pies in it, Alvin 
would step in all three. " 

— John Diefenbaker 



Political Career 

In university, Hamilton cut his political teeth 
writing speeches for John Diefenbaker and 
organizing Conservative election campaigns. 
Saskatchewan Tories were both unpopular 
and disorganized; Hamilton's ideas, papers, 
committee work and speeches contributed to 
their 1957 comeback. 

Hamilton worked full time as federal 
Conservative director in Saskatchewan from 
1948 to 1957, and although his eyes were on 
the federal arena, he was chosen provincial 
Conservative leader in 1949. By 1957, after 
unsuccessfully contesting the 1948, 1952 and 
1956 provincial elections, he became 
frustrated with provincial politics and 
resigned as Saskatchewan leader to focus on 
the 1957 national campaign. 

After defeats in the 1945, 1949 and 1953 
federal elections, he vowed that if he did not 
become an MP, he would quit politics and 
look for a job. On the strength of 
Diefenbaker's national development policy, 
Hamilton was finally elected MP for 
Qu'Appelle in 1957. At first he told 
Diefenbaker he did not want a cabinet 
portfolio, but both his supporters and 
Diefenbaker felt he deserved one so he 
became minister of northern affairs and 
national resources and chaired the cabinet 
wheat committee from August 1957. In a 
1960 cabinet shuffle, Diefenbaker turned the 
agriculture portfolio over to Hamilton. 
Hamilton became ill and could not actively 



campaign in the 1962 election. The 
Conservatives won only a minority 
government, retaining most of their rural 
ridings but losing the support and confidence 
of eastern and urban voters. Many 
Diefenbaker-era policies appeared to benefit 
only the west — for example, Hamilton 
solved the problem of grain surpluses but did 
little to overcome surpluses of butter or other 
dairy products. Voters were impatient, and 
despite efforts to develop new policies in 
support of easterners, the Conservatives lost 
the 1963 election. 

Hamilton resisted the pressure to return to 
Saskatchewan politics after 1963. He became 
opposition critic for agriculture, finance and 
energy, and chaired caucus committees on 
agriculture and policy. He also sat on the 
House committee on northern affairs and 
natural resources and was active in 
international trade. Hamilton also 
unsuccessfully contested the federal 
Conservative leadership in 1967. 

Hamilton lost his seat in the 1968 federal 
election, but returned as MP for Qu'Appelle- 
Moose Mountain in 1972. He held the seat 
for the next 16 years. After the Conservatives 
won the 1984 election, he served as a policy 
advisor to the Mulroney government. 

Hamilton retired from federal politics in 
1988 and lives in Manotick, Ontario. 



52 



Departmental Developments 

Hamilton took a hands-off approach to the 
department, leaving administration to his 
deputy and focusing on trade and 
development. 

He transferred the Canadian Wheat Board 
from the trade and commerce portfolio to 
agriculture because he felt that to solve 
farmers' cash flow problems, he needed 
control over grain sales. The Board of Grain 
Commissioners also came under his authority 
after 1960. 

In 1962, the Health of Animals Division split 
from the Production and Marketing Branch. 
Hamilton also established the Food Research 
Institute, combining three related institutes 
into one to study food quality and consumer 
acceptance, storage and processing. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

At the height of the Cold War, Hamilton sold 
Canada's surplus grain to communist China. 
Beijing had a food shortage and started 
buying Canadian wheat in 1958. Under a 
I960 agreement, over $422 million worth of 
wheat and barley was sent to China over two 
and a half years. 

The trade and diplomatic negotiations were 
controversial. Cabinet almost didn't approve 
the credit arrangements. Americans opposed 
trading with "enemy communists". 
Commonwealth loyalists opposed China's 
aggression towards India. And textile 
manufacturers feared lost market share if 
reciprocal Chinese goods entered Canada. 
However, these sales restored western 
agricultural prosperity — the average farm 
income tripled — and created a lasting legacy 
for the Conservative party across the Prairies. 
Today, grain sales to China are worth $750 
million. 

Hamilton helped establish the United 
Nations' World Food Program and the 
Agricultural Economic Research Council, a 
joint industry-government agency dedicated 
to independent policy evaluation and 
research in agricultural economics and rural 
sociology. 



His final legacy was the Agricultural 
Rehabilitation and Development Act 
(ARDA) of 1961. This legislation made it 
easier for joint federal-provincial programs 
to help farmers operating small or 
unprofitable farms pursue alternate land use 
or employment, to promote soil and water 
conservation, and to fund research and rural 
development projects. 

Worth Noting 

• Hamilton won the Burma Star Decoration 
for his service in the Second World War. 

• In 1987, Parliament recognized Hamilton 
for his 30' h anniversary as a MP. John 
Turner toasted and roasted his career, 
concluding, "The farmers of this country 
will always remember him as a 
spectacularly successful minister.. .The 
only weakness in judgement he has ever 
shown is having hired Brian Mulroney." 
(Mulroney worked on Hamilton's 1962 
campaign.) 



53 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 






Harry William Hays 

April 22, 1963 - December 17, 1965 




54 



Harry William Hays 

(1909-1982) 

Birthplace 

Carstairs, Alberta 

Federal Constituency 

Calgary South (Alberta) 

Education 

St. Mary's High School, Calgary 

Professional Background 

Auctioneer, cattle exporter, rancher/farmer 
and Holstein breeder; president of Canadian 
Swine Breeders during the wartime "Bacon 
for Britain" campaign; founding member/ 
president. Alberta Poultry Breeders' 
Association; president, Alberta Holstein 
Breeders' Association; chairman, Calgary 
Board of Trade agricultural bureau; radio 
broadcaster 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 

"I don 't want to present myself as 
a country bumpkin or a hayseed, 
whatever political advantages that folksy 
image may have seemed to have... 
I don 't believe you have to pose as a 
country cousin with barnyard on your 
overalls... to do a decent job as minister 
of agriculture. " 
— Harry Hays 



'Wo minister seems more inept inside 
Parliament and few get so much done 
outside it. " 
— Walter Stewart, Toronto Star Weekly, 1965 

Political Career 

When Harry Hays sold his dairy herd and 
became mayor of Calgary in 1959 he said he 
had "made his fortune as a rancher and 
dairyman and needed something to do in 
retirement." 

Hays admired Lester Pearson and was 
offered the chance to develop Liberal 
agriculture policy if he ran in the 1963 
election. He became the only Liberal elected 
in Alberta or Saskatchewan that year. After 
he was appointed minister of agriculture, his 
frequent absences in Parliament were 
controversial — his time was precious as he 
continued to serve briefly as Calgarj 's 
mayor, travelled as Rotary Club district 
governor and refused to stop auctioneering. 

Hays was a colourful politician, using poor 
grammar and swearing, then telling reporters 
who smoothed the "roughage" from his 
quotes that he was misquoted. Hays once 
described his goal: "We want a flush-toilet, 
not an outhouse, farm economy for Canada". 
He was popular in caucus, and would often 
invite rural backbenchers to review draft 
legislation and offer opinions. But he found 
Ottawa's slow pace "a burr under my 
saddle". He antagonized farmers' organizations 
by shooting down proposals he didn't like. 



He thought Canada was behind other 
countries in establishing prices to ensure a 
strong industry and said subsidies led to 
surpluses. He advocated a minimum farm 
income and a comprehensive marketing 
system for farmers. 

In 1965, Hays was defeated as an MP. 
Albertans were unimpressed with Liberal 
policies on medicare, pensions and the new 
Canadian flag. Hays was appointed to the 
Senate in 1966 and continued to develop 
agriculture policy as member of the Senate 
agriculture committee. 

Hays also co-chaired the special joint 
committee of the Senate and the House of 
Commons on the Constitution in 1980, and 
played a key role in developing the Charter 
of Rights and convincing his fellow senators 
to dilute their power to veto legislation. He 
died following heart surgery in 1982. 

Departmental Developments 

• Trade Minister Mitchell Sharp oversaw 
the Canadian Wheat Board during Hays' 
tenure. 

• Computers were used to process milk 
production records after 1963. 

• In 1 964, the Economics Division became a 
branch, responsible for marketing and trade. 

• Some experimental stations were closed and 
consolidated to improve research efficiency. 



55 



Accomplishments as Minister 

After successful imports of Charolais cattle 
from the United States in 1951, Hays 
responded to farmers' demands for quality 
exotic breeds and developed a European 
importation plan. One hundred and thirteen 
Charolais cattle were imported directly into 
Canada from Europe in 1965, subject to strict 
quarantines and inspections. Simmental, 
Limousin, Main Anjou and Brown Swiss 
imports followed. 

In return, Hays established Canada's 
showcase herds of dairy and beef breeds. The 
herds were kept on experimental farms; the 
Production and Marketing Branch managed 
and funded their activities. In 1965, a 
travelling exhibit of Canadian Holsteins was 
flown to France for a two-month tour of 
agricultural shows to promote two-way trade. 
Similar European and North American tours 
were organized in subsequent years. 

Hays' Dairy Commission Act (1966) created 
a regulatory agency to purchase, process, 
ship, store and dispose of product; make 
payments to stabilize prices; investigate 
production, processing and marketing; and 
promote the use of dairy products and 
improvements in their quality and variety. 
However, Hays believed farmers needed to 
expand and diversify because "price alone 
cannot correct the economic difficulties 
of.. .small producers". 



The Farm Machinery Syndicate Credit Act 
(1964) offered groups of farmers loans to 
purchase machinery on a co-operative basis 
and expanded the size of loans available. 

The federal government revised its support 
for farm fairs and exhibitions in 1965 and 
created controversial new product 
classifications emphasizing utility over 
appearances. 

Hays also established the Veterinary College 
at Saskatoon, expanded the crop insurance 
system and originated a national farm 
accounting system. 

Worth Noting 

• Hays introduced cattle exports by air, 
shipped purebred cattle to the United 
Kingdom and Mexico for the first time, 
and opened new markets as North America's 
biggest livestock exporter in the 1950s. He 
once had Canada's largest Holstein herd 
and held numerous world records. 

• He also developed Hays Converter beef 
cattle, the first new breed recognized for 
registry in Canada. 

• Hays regretted his lack of formal 
education and dreamed of running the 
experimental farm at Lethbridge. When 
he became minister, his wife joked that 
he now ran all 38. 



• Douglas Harkness (also from Calgary) 
was a good friend of Hays. But Alvin 
Hamilton was a bitter political opponent. 
Hamilton's image, according to Hays, 
was inflated "to the dimensions of a 
latter-day saint of the back forty". Hays 
once challenged Hamilton to go to the 
Central Experimental Farm to prove he 
could milk cows — but the milking 
contest never occurred, much to the 
media's chagrin. 

• Calgary's federal building on Fourth 
Avenue SE is named after Hays. 

• Hays' son Dan is currently a Liberal 
senator for Alberta. 



56 



■*l 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



John J. Greene 

December 18, 1965 - July 5, 1968 




57 



John J. Greene 

(1920-1978) 

Birthplace 

Toronto, Ontario 

Federal Constituencies 

Renfrew South, Niagara Falls (Ontario) 

Education 

University of Toronto (BA, 1948), Osgoode 
Hall (LLB, 1950) 

Professional Background 

Northern Ontario mine worker; flight 
lieutenant, Royal Canadian Air Force (1941- 
45); established law firm in Arnprior, Ontario 
in 1949 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 



I find it hard not to go like hell. If I 
can 't do it, I'll just have to quit. 
— J. J. Greene, speaking about his 1969 
heart attack 



Political Career 

Although his upbringing in Toronto was very 
different from a farm lifestyle, Greene was 
once described in the Toronto Star as "folksy, 
friendly and successful... easy-going and 
rustic. ..one of the best stump politicians in 
the Commons". As one of Canada's few non- 
farmer ministers of agriculture, Greene used 
his experience in small-town and county 
politics in Arnprior and Renfrew County to 
gain an understanding of rural communities. 

Greene unsuccessfully contested the Ontario 
Liberal leadership in 1959. He was elected 
MP for Renfrew South in 1963. After his re- 
election in 1965, Greene became Lester 
Pearson's minister of agriculture — the first 
easterner in 54 years to hold the post. He was 
criticized for being an urban lawyer who 
knew nothing about agriculture and had 
simply lobbied harder than anyone else for 
the job. 



In 1968, Greene contested the federal Liberal 
leadership, delivering an inspiring speech on 
national unity and making it to the third 
ballot before supporting Pierre Trudeau. 
Later that year he was re-elected as MP for a 
new constituency, Niagara Falls, and 
appointed minister of energy, mines and 
resources in Trudeau's first cabinet. As 
energy minister, he prevented the sale of the 
largest oil company under Canadian control 
and Canada's largest uranium producer to 
American interests. 

Greene suffered a heart attack in 1969. In 
1971, he suffered a stroke while attending a 
nuclear conference in Japan. He retired from 
cabinet in January 1972 and was called to the 
Senate in September 1972. Greene never 
stopped working for Canadians. He was still 
participating in Senate debates the week 
before he died in Ottawa in 1978. 



58 



Departmental Developments 

• In 1 966, the Board of Grain Commissioners 
computerized the warehouse receipts and 
accounting documents of Canadian 
government elevators. 

• During Canada's Centennial in 1967, the 
department produced several special 
publications to document the history of 
the department and of Canada's 
agriculture industry. Higher than average 
numbers of visitors were noted at 
experimental farm establishments and the 
agriculture museum throughout 1967. 

• The Sir John Carling building opened in 
Ottawa in 1967. For the first time, 
administrators from different department 
divisions and branches were brought 
together at an administrative headquarters 
on the Central Experimental Farm. 

• In addition to assisting the nine original 
commodities it was designed to help, the 
Agricultural Stabilization Board provided 
subsidies for sugar beets, potatoes, and 
milk and cream for manufacturing. 

• Departmental research started to place 
more emphasis on livestock and 
agricultural engineering. 

• The Canadian Livestock Feed Board, 
created under the jurisdiction of the 
minister of forestry in 1966, was 
transferred to Greene's portfolio in 1968. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

Under Greene's leadership, five prominent 
agricultural economists were appointed to the 
1967 Task Force on Agricultural Policy to 
make recommendations to the minister on 
how best to ensure farmers' income and 
welfare. The task force commissioned 12 
studies on current agriculture issues. 

In 1965, the Economics Branch began a 
long-term appraisal of Canadian agriculture, 
researching projected supply and demand 
figures for commodities and anticipating the 
market behaviour of producers and 
consumers. These studies considered the 
implementation of marketing boards for a 
variety of Canadian commodities and paved 
the way for future marketing legislation. 

Amendments to the Crop Insurance Act in 
1966 made insurance available to more 
farmers and reduced the costs of farmer 
participation by increasing federal 
contributions. The program was also 
extended to cover production units such as 
fruit trees, berry plants and forage stands, as 
well as the costs of preparing summer fallow 
should seeding be impossible the following 
spring due to excess moisture. Greenes 
amendments worked: the 1968-69 
departmental annual report notes a 93-per- 
cent increase in the number of farmers 
participating in provincial insurance schemes 
over the previous year. 



Greene was elected chairman of the World 
Food Program Pledging Conference at the 
United Nations in 1966 and led the Canadian 
delegation to the Food and Agricultural 
Organization Conference in Rome in 1967. 

Worth Noting 

• Greene won the Distinguished Flying 
Cross for his service in the Second 
World War. 



59 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Horace Andrew (Bud) Olson 

July 6, 1968 - November 26, 1972 




60 



Horace Andrew (Bud) 
Olson 

(1925- ) 

Birthplace 

Iddesleigh, Alberta 

Federal Constituency 

Medicine Hat (Alberta) 

Education 

Medicine Hat High School 

Professional Background 

Rancher/wheat farmer; general store 
merchant and owner of farm supply business; 
member of Farmers' Union of Canada and 
Western Stock Growers' Association until 
elected to Parliament; member of Economic 
Council of Canada (1975-79) 

Political Affiliation 

Social Credit (until 1967), Liberal 

"A man of great civility and intelligence. " 

— Jean Chretien, speaking about Olson on 
his appointment as lieutenant-governor of 
Alberta, 1996 

"Farmers regarded the minister and the 
Department of Agriculture as their 
champion of everything and if you're a 
good politician you 'd better accept 
that's the vision they have of you and do 
something useful for them... " 

— Bud Olson 



Political Career 

Olson became a Social Credit MP for 
Medicine Hat in 1957. Although he was 
defeated in the 1958 election, he won the 
seat again in 1962 and was re-elected in 
1963 and 1965. By 1967, the federal Social 
Credit party was disintegrating. Though 
many of Olson's colleagues switched to the 
Conservatives, former Liberal agriculture 
minister Harry Hays helped persuade him to 
sit as a Liberal MP. Always the pragmatist, 
Olson decided his chances of making a 
difference with the Liberals, who had no 
seats in Alberta at the time, were greater than 
with the Conservatives, who dominated 
western Canadian seats. 

Olson supported Pierre Trudeau's Liberal 
leadership campaign and was appointed 
minister of agriculture after winning his first 
election as a Liberal in 1968. But in the early 
1970s, federal Liberal policies were 
unpopular in Alberta. (Trudeau even asked 
struggling western farmers "Why should I 
sell your wheat?") Olson was defeated in the 
1972 and 1974 elections. 

In 1977, Olson was called to the Senate. He 
served as opposition House leader in 1979 
and government leader from 1982 to 1984. 
Olson's favourite cabinet portfolio was one 
he held as a senator — minister of economic 
and regional development from 1980 to 
1984. As one of Trudeau's most powerful 
ministers, he chaired the cabinet committee 
on economic development from 1980 to 



1983. He was also the minister responsible 
for the Northern Pipeline Agency from 1980 
to 1984. "Selling" the National Energy 
Policy in his home province was a major 
political challenge, but he tried to work with 
oil company representatives on regulatory 
reforms. A 1982 Maclean's article described 
him as "low-key, affable, unflappable and 
shrewd as a fox". 

Olson became Alberta's 14 ,h lieutenant- 
governor in April 1996. Some considered the 
appointment controversial, but Olson said, 
"If you want someone to do this well, get a 
politician". 

Industry Issues 

In 1969, a special task force studied the 
challenges and conditions facing farmers and 
processors and released a report called 
Canadian Agriculture in the Seventies. 
Overproduction was a chronic problem with 
many commodities, and marketing systems 
were a top priority for policy development. 
Olson reflects that his role "was a selling job 
all the time. We had great surpluses of wheat, 
pork in storage, a mountain of skim milk 
powder... and we had to get out in the 
international market and sell it. And that was 
not easy.. .other countries also had surpluses 
and we had to try to get a decent price". 



61 



Departmental Developments 

Popular ideology suggested a "food systems" 
approach would be appropriate for planning 
and co-ordinating government activities. In 
1972, the Food Systems Branch was created 
to "review, evaluate and monitor federal 
government food programs as they related to 
the production and marketing of agricultural 
products". These changes introduced a 
market-oriented approach to commodity 
management that included not only primary 
producers but also processors, distributors, 
retailers and consumers. The new approach 
was controversial among some farm 
organizations, who feared a loss of control 
over agricultural policies. 

The department was actively involved in 
implementing programs to curtail 
overproduction, particularly in grains. A 
grassland incentive program was introduced 
and research branch scientists sought ways to 
encourage grain farmers to seed their poorer 
land to permanent grass. Scientists also tried 
to find new uses for surplus cereals and 
identify innovative new crops that could be 
marketed to both Canadian and world 
markets. 



The size and scope of government activities 
were restricted for the first time. Some 
research stations were closed to reduce 
overhead costs. For example, in 1971 the 
Institute for Biological Control in Belleville 
closed and many employees moved to 
Winnipeg or Regina. 

Some research was contracted out to 
universities or the private sector. This 
stimulated private sector employment and 
innovation in areas where the department 
lacked sufficient resources. Contracts were 
awarded for solutions to specific problems, 
which ensured results could be quickly and 
effectively used in the economy. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

• Olson oversaw the early and 
controversial steps towards supply 
management, including enabling 
legislation for marketing boards for 
turkey and chicken. "I tried to persuade 
farmers that their job was to participate 
in marketing and not expect someone 
else to do it for them," says Olson. 
"Others would only be interested in 
margins. Farmers needed to be active to 
get a good price." 

• The LIFT (Lower Inventories for 
Tomorrow) program was introduced to 
curtail western wheat production and 
reduce grain surpluses. 

• The department revised the Canada 
Grains Act for the first time in 30 years. 

• It also introduced the Small Farms 
Development Program, which would both 
help struggling producers and also offer 
other options to those who wanted to quit 
farming. 



62 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Eugene Francis Whelan 

November 27, 1972 - June 3, 1979 
and March 3, 1980 - June 29, 1984 




/'* 









/ < Canada 

• ' / i ■' 



63 



Eugene Francis 
Whelan 

(1924- ) 

Birthplace 

Amherstburg, Ontario 

Federal Constituency 

Essex South/Essex-Windsor (Ontario) 

Education 

Walkerville Vocational and Technical School, 
University of Windsor (LLD (Hon.) 1983) 

Professional Background 

Mixed farmer, trained as a tool and die 
maker; director and president of Harrow 
Farmers Co-op; director of United Co- 
operatives of Ontario, Co-operators 
Insurance Co., Ontario Winter Wheat 
Producers Marketing Board; president of 
Essex County branch, board member of 
Ontario Federation of Agriculture 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 

"Paper doesn 'tfeed cows and it doesn 't 
feed people. " 
— Eugene Whelan 



Political Career 

Whelan learned about grassroots democracy 
from his experiences in municipal politics, 
working his way from the local separate 
school board in 1 945 to township council 
and the Essex County road committee in the 
1950s and eventually serving as warden of 
Essex County in 1962. After an early defeat 
in the provincial election of 1959, he was 
elected MP for Essex South in the general 
election of 1962 and held the seat until he 
retired from politics. 

Agriculture and resource issues were 
Whelan's consistent focus as an MP; he 
became involved in politics because "he 
wanted farmers to have a bigger say". He 
chaired the House of Commons' agriculture 
committee (1965-68) and served as 
parliamentary secretary to the minister of 
fisheries and forestry (1968-70). After the 
1972 election he was appointed minister of 
agriculture, a post he held for the next 12 
years, except for the nine-month tenure of 
Joe Clark's Conservative government in 
1979-80. 

Whelan took a particular interest in 
international parliamentary and agriculture 
organizations, representing Canada at the 
founding conference of the United Nations 
World Food Council ( 1 974) and serving as 
its president (1983-85). As both a minister 
and an MP, he was active in foreign aid and 



agricultural development issues and 
participated in several trade missions and in 
conferences of the Organization for Economic 
Co-operation and Development (OECD) and 
the Food and Agriculture Organization 
(FAO) of the United Nations. 

Whelan ran unsuccessfully for the Liberal 
leadership in June 1984. He decided not to 
contest the 1984 election and became an 
agriculture and agri-food policy consultant, 
continuing his involvement in international 
agriculture issues. On his retirement in July 
1984, he was appointed the first Canadian 
ambassador and permanent representative to 
the FAO in Rome. His appointment was 
cancelled by the Conservatives that October 
because they felt it was an example of 
Liberal patronage. He accepted a Senate 
appointment in August 1996. 

Industry Issues 

Whelan's government introduced food price 
controls to offset inflation. Even though the 
Food Prices Review Board blamed marketing 
boards and not supermarkets for high prices, 
Whelan championed farmers' rights to good 
prices. He saw their problems as, not 
overproduction, but producing the wrong 
things for the wrong market. 



64 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



Worth Noting 



By 1977, the food systems approach had 
permeated management across the 
department. The Food Systems Branch was 
absorbed into the Regional Development 
Branch. The other five branches were also 
realigned to promote a "food policy" 
orientation. A further reorganization in 1978 
created the Policy, Planning and Evaluation 
Branch as a liaison between domestic and 
international development issues. More and 
more, the department's work overlapped with 
food policy work in other departments, and 
Whelan worked to establish collaborative 
policies. 

Whelan's commitment to international 
agriculture and his strong personal concern 
about the potential famine conditions in 
Africa led to increased departmental 
participation in many CIDA-approved 
agricultural research and development 
projects. 

Whelan spent a lot of time in direct contact 
with departmental staff and is still 
remembered as one of the most popular and 
respected ministers. Whelan says. "When I 
arrived in 1972 I was handed one of the 
finest outfits in the government... Since 
Confederation, Agriculture had been the 
most decentralized department of 
government... we were doing it before 
anyone was talking about it". 



Whelan was committed to supply 
management and marketing boards, 
particularly for the dairy industry. He 
proclaimed the Canadian Egg Marketing 
Agency in 1973 and the National Turkey 
Marketing Agency in 1974 and created 
the National Chicken Broiler Agency in 
1976. He was unsuccessful in achieving 
marketing boards for other commodities. 

The New Crop Development Fund 
( 1973) helped develop new crops and 
varieties. 

A domestic feed grain policy ( 1974, 
1976) co-ordinated the transportation and 
stocks of feed grains for domestic and 
export markets. Additional feed storage 
programs in 1977 increased the 
production and efficiency of the livestock 
feed industry. 

Whelan wanted to establish a farmers' 
bank. Although he didn't achieve this 
goal, amendments to the Farm Credit Act 
( 1975, 1978) raised the ceiling for 
borrowing. 

The Advance Payments for Crops Act 
( 1977) guaranteed loans to producers 
requiring advance payments for 
perishable crops. 

Whelan worked with farm organizations 
to create CANAGREX, the Canadian 
Agricultural Export Corporation, as a 
federal Crown corporation in 1983. 



Whelan was one of Pierre Trudeau's best 
constitutional campaigners. But in 1976, 
angry Quebec dairy farmers threw diluted 
milk on Whelan after cabinet refused to 
approve dairy subsidies to compensate 
farmers in a collapsed world market. 
Whelan says this refusal helped elect the 
Parti Quebecois in rural ridings that fall 
(half of Canada's dairy farmers are from 
Quebec). 

Mikhail Gorbachev, as Minister of 
Agriculture for the USSR, visited Canada 
at Whelan's invitation in 1983 — his 
only major trip to a western country 
before becoming General Secretary of the 
Communist party. 

Whelan, "The Great Canadian Farmer", 
was made an officer of the Order of 
Canada in 1987. 

The Hon. Eugene F Whelan Experimental 
Farm near Woodslee, part of the Harrow 
Research Station, recognizes his 
contributions. 

Whelan's daughter Susan is now MP 
for Essex. 



65 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



John Wise 

June 4, 1979 - March 2, 1980 

and September 17, 1984 - September 14, 1988 




66 



John Wise 

(1935- ) 

Birthplace 

St. Thomas, Ontario 

Federal Constituency 

Elgin (Ontario) 

Education 

University of Guelph ( 1956) 

Professional Background 

Fifth-generation dairy farmer; president o\' 
Elgin Jersey Breeders; director and president, 
Oxford and District Cattle Breeders 
Association (now Western Ontario Breeders); 
dairy cattle judge; chairman of Elgin and St. 
Thomas Planning Boards; director of Elgin 
Co-operative Services 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 



"In this job, the roof usually fell in on 
you every day. You 're dealing with 
Mother Nature and you never know 
what to expect. " 

— John Wise, quoted in The Globe and Mail 
in 1988 



Political Career 

Wise was active in farm organizations and in 
municipal politics and planning for more 
than 15 years before his election to 
Parliament. He served as councillor, deputy 
reeve and reeve of Yarmouth Township 
through the 1960s and became warden of 
Elgin County in 1969. Three years later, he 
was elected MP for Elgin, a seat he held 
through five consecutive elections until 
1988, when he did not run. 

Based on his experience, Wise was a natural 
fit for the roles of opposition dairy and 
agriculture critic through the 1970s. He also 
served as critic for supply and services 
( 1983-84). He developed Conservative 
agriculture platforms and policies and 
chaired his caucus' agriculture committee in 
1976. When Joe Clark's Conservatives won 
the 1979 election and formed a minority 
government for nine months, he was 
appointed minister of agriculture. Four years 
later, he became one of the few Clark-era 
cabinet ministers to retain the same portfolio 
in Brian Mulroney's majority government. 

Wise held the agriculture portfolio through 
the first term of the Mulroney government 
but decided to retire from politics before the 
1988 election. He remains active in 
agriculture issues and currently serves as a 
board member for Amtelcom and chairman 
of the board for the Canadian Livestock 



Exporters Association and the Canadian 
Embryo Exporters Association. He sold his 
dairy herd when he was elected to 
Parliament, but he still lives on his farm near 
St.Thomas, Ontario. 

Industry Issues 

When Wise began his second term in 1984, 
the industry was experiencing some of its 
worst financial conditions since the 1930s. 
Record high interest rates and low market 
prices, in combination with a trade war over 
grains between the European Community 
and the United States, brought unprecedented 
challenges to the farm community. Record 
levels of government compensation for 
droughts, floods and poor harvest 
conditions — particularly the Special 
Canadian Grains payments in 1986 and 
1987 — were responses to the industry's cries 
for help. Wise also had the challenge of 
protecting the principles of supply 
management while introducing his 
government's free trade policies to the 
agriculture industry. 



67 



Departmental Developments 

In 1979, the Health of Animals Branch 
became part of the Food Production and 
Inspection Branch in a reorganization 
designed to strengthen the regional 
development and marketing activities of the 
department. Decentralized plant and animal 
inspection activities were integrated with 
some of the plant and animal production, 
quarantine and racetrack supervision 
activities. 

The same reorganization formed the 
Regional Development and International 
Affairs Branch, amalgamating 
intergovernmental and international services 
with farm development, some animal and 
crop production activities, and the 
Agricultural Development Directorate of the 
Policy, Planning and Economics Branch. A 
director of regional development was 
appointed in each province. 

The Marketing and Economics Branch was 
created to increase trade promotion as part of 
a government-wide priority to increase 
international trade. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

The department's budget increased from 
$1 billion to $4 billion during Wise's tenure. 
He reflects that "we invested a lot of money". 

• The Farm Debt Review Act (1986) 
established farm debt review boards in 
every province to help farmers and 
facilitate financial arrangements with 
creditors in times of crisis. 

• Wise amended the Farm Credit Act and 
increased assistance for farmers 
borrowing through the Farm Credit 
Corporation by increasing the 
corporation's funding and accessibility. 
New programs also reduced farm interest 
rates, shared mortgage risks and offered 
commodity-based loans. 

• Amendments to the Agricultural 
Stabilization Act (1985) increased the 
number of commodities covered, 
increased the level and changed the 
calculation of support, and allowed for 
regional support programs. The Tri- 
partite Stabilization Program also 
provided a national plan for federal- 
provincial-industry co-operation in 
stabilizing farm incomes. 



• The Canadian Rural Transition Program 
(1986) helped families who were forced 
to stop farming, providing assistance for 
retraining or offering targeted initiatives, 
such as the Tobacco Diversification Plan, 
to diversify into other businesses. 

• The Farm Improvement and Marketing 
Cooperatives Loans Act (1987) offered 
individuals and co-operatives loan 
guarantees for processing, distributing 
and marketing products. 

• The Grape Revitalization Program (1987) 
improved the competitiveness of Ontario 
and British Columbia's grape and wine 
industries. 

• In 1986, Wise announced a new long- 
term dairy policy following an extensive 
review. The five-year program and its 
multi-year financial commitment brought 
increased stability to the dairy sector. 

• Wise oversaw the establishment of new 
research stations and laboratories at 
St-Hyacinthe, Guelph, Calgary, 
Lethbridge, Brandon and London. 

Worth Noting 

• Wise is the honorary founding president 
of Soil Conservation Canada. 



68 



1+1 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Ralph Ferguson 

June 30, 1984 - September 16, 1984 




69 



Ralph Ferguson 

(1929- ) 

Birthplace 

Middlesex County, Ontario 

Federal Constituency 

Lambton-Middlesex (Ontario) 

Education 

Alvinston, Ontario 

Professional Background 

Farmer; charter member of National Farm 
Products Marketing Council; member, 
Ontario Federation of Agriculture; co- 
founder, Lambton Pork Producers 
Association, advocate of Ontario Pork 
Producers Marketing Board in late 1950s; 
chairman, Lambton County Egg Producers 
and worked to create Ontario Egg Producers 
Marketing Board in mid-1960s; county 
delegate to the Ontario Egg Board; served on 
county wheat, white bean and soybean 
associations 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 



Political Career 

Ferguson was elected to the House of 
Commons in 1980 and appointed 
parliamentary secretary to the minister of 
state (small business and tourism) in March. 
In the early 1980s, he also served as 
parliamentary secretary to the minister of 
finance and as deputy government whip. 

Ferguson was a proponent of export market 
expansion and participated in several trade 
missions. He encouraged farm organizations 
and the federal Liberals to create 
CANAGREX, the Canadian Agricultural 
Export Corporation, as a Crown corporation 
in 1983. Ferguson was appointed minister of 
agriculture by John Turner, who became 
prime minister in June 1984, and served until 
the Liberals' electoral defeat three months later. 

Ferguson lost his seat in the 1984 general 
election but was re-elected in 1988. His 
concern over growing corporate concentration 
in U.S. agriculture made him a strong 
opponent of free trade with the United States. 
He served as opposition agriculture critic and 
assistant co-critic for international trade. His 
continued involvement in policy development 
led to the adoption of a comprehensive 
agriculture policy by the Liberal party in 
1970. He retired from politics in 1993 but is 
still an agricultural activist in southwestern 
Ontario, a practising conservationist and a 
proponent of environmentally friendly, 
renewable fuels. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

Because Ferguson served for a limited 
period, it is difficult to identify a specific 
legacy for him in the department. With 
increasing pressure from industry for plant 
breeders' rights legislation, Ferguson 
recognized the need to protect parent seed 
stocks and was instrumental in establishing 
the first in a series of controlled 
environment seed banks for this purpose at 
the Morden research facility. He is best 
known for his later work and studies 
comparing farm gate and consumer prices 
and lobbying against corporate concentration 
in the Canadian food system. 



70 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Donald Frank Mazankowski 

September 15, 1988 - April 20, 1991 




71 



Donald Frank 
Mazankowski 

(1935- ) 

Birthplace 

Viking, Alberta 

Federal Constituency 

Vegreville (Alberta) 

Education 

Viking, Alberta; Technical University of 
Nova Scotia (D.Eng. (Hon.), 1987) 
and University of Alberta 
(LLD (Hon.), 1993) 

Professional Background 

Owner of a car and farm machinery 
dealership in a farm community; separate 
school board trustee 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 

"We were aiming for a partnership with 
farmers and the provinces . . . trying to 
grow the pie rather than haggling over 
the size of the piece. " 
— Don Mazankowski, 1997 



Political Career 

Mazankowski's long and distinguished career 
in federal politics began with his election to 
the House of Commons in 1968. He was re- 
elected as MP for Vegreville (Alberta) in six 
consecutive elections and served in 
Parliament for the next 25 years. 

When the federal Conservatives were in 
opposition in the 1970s, Mazankowski 
served as caucus chair from 1973 to 1976 
and co-chair of both the 1976 leadership 
convention and the 1981 general meeting. He 
served as transportation critic and chaired the 
Conservative caucus committee on 
transportation and communications, as well 
as serving as the Conservative spokesperson 
on government operations and economic 
development. He served briefly in Joe 
Clark's cabinet in 1979-80 as minister of 
transport and minister responsible for the 
Canadian Wheat Board. 

When the Conservatives formed a majority 
government in 1984, Mazankowski was 
appointed minister of transport, as well as 
acting minister for industry, science and 
technology. He served in these capacities 
until June 1986. He then became government 



House leader and president of the Privy 
Council, roles he filled until 1989 and 1991 
respectively. In 1986, he was also appointed 
deputy prime minister, a position he held 
until his retirement from federal politics 
in 1993. 

Mazankowski served as president of the 
Treasury Board (1987-88), minister 
responsible for privatization and regulatory 
affairs (1988-91) and minister of agriculture 
(1988-91). His final portfolio was finance, 
which he held from 1991 until his retirement. 
Throughout his career in cabinet he served 
on powerful committees such as priorities 
and planning, operations, expenditure review, 
Treasury Board, Canadian unity, and security 
and intelligence. Over time, Mazankowski 
was nicknamed the "Minister of Everything". 
He was awarded the title Right Honourable 
in June 1993. 

Since his official retirement from public life 
in October 1993, Mazankowski has been 
named to the board of directors of 1 1 major 
corporations involved in international trade 
and commerce. He also serves on the board 
of governors of the University of Alberta and 
is currently the agriculture and rural 
development sector facilitator for an Alberta 
government task force on economic growth. 



72 



Industry Issues 

Mazankowski reversed the interventionist 
tendencies of previous subsidy programs. He 
aimed for a market-driven approach to 
agriculture policies that focused on adding 
value. Trade issues dominated his term as 
minister. The Canada-U.S. Free Trade 
Agreement was implemented to improve 
access to American markets and eliminate 
tariffs while protecting Canadian supply 
management systems. 

Canada also participated in the Uruguay 
round of negotiations on the General 
Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), 
calling on member countries to implement 
comprehensive agriculture reforms and 
reduce trade-distorting measures for 
agricultural commodities. The Canadian 
industry had to agree to phase out its support 
systems over the course of the multilateral 
trade negotiations. This development 
advanced Mazankowski 's free market 
ideology but was controversial with 
producers and farm organizations. 

Departmental Developments 

In 1989, as a result of an industry task force 
review, the department developed a new 
comprehensive policy called Growing 
Together: A Vision for Canada's Agri-Food 
Industry. It was based on four pillars for 
Canadian agriculture in the 1990s: market 
orientation, regional diversity, greater 



self-reliance and environmental sustainability. 
A parallel mission review was underway in 
the department, which evolved into a 
comprehensive regulatory review and 
industry consultation process to consolidate 
and refine departmental activities in the years 
to come. Risk assessment studies related to 
food safety set departmental priorities for 
food sampling. Evaluations of Canadian 
trading partners' practices laid the groundwork 
for future improvements in food inspection. 

The 1991 Budget created a special operating 
agency to manage the department's racetrack 
supervision responsibilities. 

Accomplishments as Minister 

• The Farm Income Protection Act (1991 ) 
promoted economic stability in the 
agriculture community by bringing 
together elements of previous farm safety 
net programs into a comprehensive, 
whole-farm strategy. The Gross Revenue 
Insurance Program (GRIP) offered price 
supports and yield protection while the 
Net Income Stabilization Account 
(NISA) helped producers secure a steady 
farm income. 

• The Canadian Agri-Food Development 
Initiative (1989) funded industry 
diversification and innovation, such as 
the development of apple chips for 
market in British Columbia. 



The Domestic Dairy Product Innovation 
Program of the Canadian Dairy 
Commission (1989) added flexibility to 
the national system for managing 
industrial milk supply by providing an 
amount of milk additional to provincial 
milk quotas to introduce innovative 
products on the domestic market. 

National soil conservation program 
agreements were signed with almost 
every province to encourage federal- 
provincial co-operation in improved soil 
management. 

Amendments to the Crop Insurance Act 
(1990) increased maximum coverage 
levels and offered greater flexibility in 
average yields and support payments. 

New plant breeders rights were 
established to guarantee protection and 
royalties for new and innovative plant 
varieties and to encourage private sector 
research and development. 



73 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



William Hunter McKnight 

April 21, 1991 - January 4, 1993 




w\ 




" : 7& 



Jf 









/' 



74 



William Hunter 
McKnight 

(1940- ) 

Birthplace 

Elrose, Saskatchewan 

Federal Constituency 

Kindersley-Lloydminster (Saskatchewan) 

Education 

Elrose, Saskatchewan 

Professional Background 

Farmer 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 

"In 1977 and 1978, I got disgusted . . 
I wanted to make a change for my 
province, for Canada I guess, and 1 
decided I was bloody well going to 
run. " 
— Bill McKnight, 1988 interview 



Political Career 

After three years as president of the 
Conservative Party of Saskatchewan from 
1974 to 1977, McKnight was elected MP for 
Kindersley-Lloydminster in 1979. He was re- 
elected in the next three federal elections. 

When the Conservatives took office in 1984, 
McKnight was appointed minister of labour 
and minister responsible for the Canada 
Mortgage and Housing Corporation. In 1986, 
he switched portfolios and became the 
minister of Indian affairs and northern 
development. He added to this assignment 
the role of minister responsible for western 
economic diversification in 1987. 

McKnight left these portfolios for defence in 
1989 and switched assignments yet again in 
1 99 1 when he succeeded Don Mazankowski 
as minister of agriculture. McKnight had a 
reputation as a straightforward, competent 
and down-to-earth minister. 

His final cabinet assignment was as minister 
of energy, mines and resources from January 
to October 1993. He retired from federal 
politics before the 1993 general election. 

McKnight currently serves as chair of 
NAFTA Trade Consultants Inc. and Anvil 
Range Mining Corp. He is also on the board 
of directors of five different commercial 
enterprises and served as the honorary consul 
to Ecuador in 1995. 



Industry Issues 

Trade issues, particularly those arising from 
North American Free Trade Agreement and 
General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 
negotiations and specific commodity 
disputes, continued to affect international 
market development. 

Industry groups consulted with government 
officials to find ways to streamline 
government operations and harmonize 
federal and provincial regulations while still 
providing agri-businesses with the support 
they needed to compete internationally. 

Departmental Developments 

During McKnight's time as minister, the 
department continued to focus on the four 
priorities established during Mazankowski's 
tenure: market orientation, regional diversity, 
greater self-reliance and environmental 
sustainability. Extensive industry 
consultations continued to shape program 
and regulatory reviews within the 
department. 



75 



Accomplishments as Minister 

The Trade Opportunities Strategy, announced 
in November 1992, funded market 
development initiatives introduced by 
industry, especially for value-added products. 
Regional trade contacts across Canada co- 
ordinated information to help External 
Affairs and International Trade Canada 
resolve international trade disputes. Agri- 
food specialists based at Canadian embassies 
in strategic international markets worked to 
improve access for Canadian exports and to 
provide market intelligence. 

An export advisory committee led by 
industry offered suggestions on trade strategy 
and the integration of government resources 
for trade policy and market development. In 
partnership with the Canadian meat industry, 
the department developed new international 
training programs to increase foreign 
customers' awareness of and demand for 
Canadian red meat products. 



The National Farm Business Management 
Program provided $10 million in annual 
federal funding, matched by provincial 
funding, to improve farm sector 
competitiveness by training producers in 
marketing and promotion, accounting and 
computer technology. 

Agriculture Canada contributed $7 million in 
research and development funding to the 
federal Ethanol Action Plan to reduce the 
cost of ethanol production and establish a 
potential growth market for renewable fuels 
made from agricultural commodities. 

McKnight also worked to implement the 
federal Green Plan Sustainable Agriculture 
Initiative. This initiative provided $170 million 
over six years for programs to promote 
environmentally sound practices in the agri- 
food sector. The provinces shared the costs 
of these programs with the federal 
government. 



Worth Noting 

• McKnight shared an apartment with Don 
Mazankowski during their time as fellow 
MPs and cabinet ministers in Ottawa. 



McKnight introduced "check-off legislation 
into the House of Commons to allow 
commodity groups to collect levies on 
domestic sales and imports to fund their 
commodity research and promotional 
activities. 



76 



M 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Charles James Mayer 

Januarx 4, 1993 - November 4, 1993 




77 



Charles James Mayer 

(1936- ) 

Birthplace 

Saskatoon, Saskatchewan 

Federal Constituency 

Portage-Marquette/Lisgar-Marquette 
(Manitoba) 

Education 

University of Saskatchewan (B.Sc, 1964) 

Professional Background 

Mixed farmer; president of Manitoba Beef 
Growers Association; member of Manitoba 
Farm Bureau, Canadian Cattlemen's 
Association; member of Manitoba Institute 
of Agrologists, Agricultural Institute of 
Canada 

Political Affiliation 

Conservative 

"/ don 't think the Canadian 
consumer/taxpayer is aware of the 
strength of this industry. We need better 
salesmanship and communication. " 
— Charlie Mayer, 1997 



Political Career 

Mayer was elected to the House of Commons 
in 1979, representing Portage-Marquette. He 
was re-elected in 1980 and 1984 for this riding 
and in 1988 for the riding of Lisgar-Marquette. 
As an MP, he worked with Minister of 
Agriculture John Wise as an advisor on 
agriculture policy and chaired the Manitoba 
Progressive Conservative caucus. 

Mayer's path to becoming minister of 
agriculture led him through a variety of 
junior cabinet positions, all of which dealt 
with agricultural policy in some way. In 
1984, he was appointed minister of state for 
the Canadian Wheat Board and minister 
responsible for liaison with Canada's co- 
operative sector. He changed assignments 
slightly in 1987 when he was appointed 
minister of state for grains and oilseeds. In 
1989, he added to these responsibilities those 
of minister responsible for western economic 
diversification. 

In January 1993, Mayer was appointed 
minister of agriculture, small communities 
and rural areas. After new prime minister 
Kim Campbell's cabinet shuffle in June 
1993, his position was renamed minister of 
agriculture and agri-food. 

Mayer was defeated in the 1993 federal 
election. He continues to be active in the 
agriculture industry and serves as chair of the 
Manitoba Crop Insurance Corporation and on 
the board of Canada Bread. 



Industry Issues 

Incorporating agricultural products into the 
General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade 
(GATT) required a tremendous amount of 
work on the part of the department and 
industry groups. Canadian farmers depended 
on exports for their prosperity, so trade 
negotiations were a top priority. Mayer 
described the goal of the GATT negotiations 
as ensuring farmers "competed on quality 
and price, not on the size of their 
government's treasuries". 



78 



Departmental Developments 



Accomplishments as Minister 



The mandate of the department was officially 
revised and expanded to reflect ongoing 
regulatory and program reviews. At the same 
time, government spending restraints and a 
10-per-cent departmental budget cut 
necessitated a climate of restraint. 

In consultation with industry, the department 
conducted an extensive regulatory review 
and revised obsolete regulations. Eight pilot 
projects found ways to reduce duplication 
between federal and provincial inspection 
agencies. The Food Safety Enhancement 
Program promoted new international 
standards, known as HACCP (Hazard 
Analysis Critical Control Points) inspection 
systems, at federally registered plants. The 
department reduced its seven branches to 
five to streamline overhead. It also cut levels 
of management and launched a regional 
review to improve service to departmental 
clients nationwide. 

Food inspection activities and personnel 
formerly under the jurisdiction of the 
departments of Consumer and Corporate 
Affairs and Industry, Science and Technology 
merged with those oi the Food Production 
and Inspection Branch after June 1993. The 
department was given a new name, 
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, to reflect 
its new emphasis on working with the food 
industry as well as primary producers. 



Mayer believed there was too much 
government regulation in some areas of the 
industry. He changed grain marketing policy 
and announced that farmers were free to sell 
barley outside the Canadian Wheat Board. 
While this departure from accepted 
procedure was eventually reversed, at the 
time it meant that farmers were free to 
market their products to American clients. 

Mayer appointed the Producer Payment 
Board to recommend ways to transfer grain 
rail subsidies to farmers. The railways 
received $520 million annually in Crow Rate 
benefits. Because the government couldn't 
afford to invest new money in grain 
subsidies, it sought alternate means of 
supporting farmers. 

The Canadian Rural Opportunities Initiative 
provided $25 million over three years for 
counselling, training and business 
development assistance for farm families 
with below-average incomes. 

Mayer also worked to update and expand the 
mandate of the Farm Credit Corporation to 
include funding for diversified farm 
operations, value-added processing and part- 
time producers 



79 



■*■ 



Agriculture and Agriculture et 

Agri-Food Canada Agroalimentaire Canada 



Ralph Goodale 

November 4, 1993 - June 11, 1997 




80 



Ralph Goodale 

(1949- ) 

Birthplace 

Regina, Saskatchewan 

Federal Constituencies 

Assiniboia, Regina-Wascana (Saskatchewan) 

Education 

University of Regina (BA, 1971), University 
of Saskatchewan (LLB, 1972) 

Professional Background 

Called to the Saskatchewan bar in 1973, 
member of Law Society of Saskatchewan; 
special assistant to the minister of justice and 
attorney general (1973-74); operated family 
farm until 1975; worked for CBC News and 
Public Affairs (1968-72) 

Political Affiliation 

Liberal 



Political Career 

Goodale was elected to the House of 
Commons in 1974 for the large rural 
constituency of Assiniboia. Over the next 
five years, he occupied a variety of positions, 
including parliamentary secretary to several 
ministers, among others minister of 
transport, minister responsible for the 
Canadian Wheat Board, president of the 
Privy Council and deputy prime minister. 

As parliamentary secretary to the minister 
responsible for the Canadian Wheat Board, 
Goodale piloted the Western Grain 
Stabilization Program through Parliament in 
1976. Between 1974 and 1979, he was also 
vice-chairman of the House of Commons 
standing committee on agriculture, vice- 
chairman of the special joint committee on 
the northern gas pipeline, deputy government 
whip and chairman of the government's 
prairie caucus. 

In 198 1 . Goodale was chosen leader of the 
Saskatchewan Liberal Party. He was elected 
MLA for Assiniboia-Gravelbourg in the 1986 
Saskatchewan election. He resigned from 
provincial politics to run as the Liberal 
candidate for Regina-Wascana in the 1988 
federal election but was defeated. 

For the next five years, Goodale took a break 
from politics and worked as director of 
regulatory affairs and corporate secretary of 
Pioneer Life Assurance Company and 



Pioneer Lifeco Inc., both Regina-based 
financial institutions, and as corporate 
secretary of Sovereign Life Insurance Co. 

When he was re-elected as MP for Regina- 
Wascana in October 1993, he was appointed 
minister of agriculture and agri-food. After 
the January 1996 cabinet shuffle, he also was 
appointed chairman of the cabinet committee 
on economic development policy. 

Goodale was re-elected in 1997 and 
transferred to the natural resources portfolio. 
He is still the minister responsible for the 
Canadian Wheat Board. 

Industry Issues 

Goodale's term as minister coincided with 
government budget cuts to programs and 
services, as well as a rapid expansion of 
export markets and information technology 
for the agriculture sector. The Liberal 
government's focus on restraining spending 
and cutting the deficit reduced the level of 
financial and administrative support the 
department could offer producers and 
processors. Fortunately, strong world grain 
prices reduced the need for government 
support. 

"Team Canada" trade missions and enhanced 
market information available through new 
online support services helped create new 
opportunities for innovative production and 
marketing. The Uruguay round of the 



81 



General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade was 
completed in December 1993 and implemented 
in August 1996. The creation of the World 
Trade Organization (WTO) helped Canadian 
producers and agri-businesses secure access 
to world markets. 

Departmental Developments 

The 1995 Budget announced that federal 
government food inspection services would 
be consolidated into a new agency called the 
Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA). 
The department rose to the challenge of 
transforming its current inspection services, 
administered by the Food Production and 
Inspection Branch, into a consolidated 
agency that would also include inspection 
responsibilities and personnel formerly under 
the jurisdiction of Health Canada and the 
Department of Fisheries and Oceans. 

In 1995, in co-operation with Foreign Affairs 
and International Trade Canada, the 
department created the Agri-Food Trade 
Service (ATS) to give exporters easy access 
to government programs, market 
information, trade regulations and other 
types of support. The industry set a goal of 
$20 billion in annual agricultural exports by 
the year 2000. In 1996 the sector exported 
$19.95 billion worth of agri-food products. 

The Rural Secretariat was established to co- 
ordinate the work of federal departments and 
agencies focused on the economic renewal of 
rural communities. 



Accomplishments as Minister 

• The Agricultural Marketing Programs 
Act (effective 1997) replaced four 
previous programs. It provides more 
efficient administration of interest-free 
cash advances to help producers market 
their products. 

• The end of both the "Crow Rate" 
subsidies for prairie grain transport (the 
Western Grain Transportation Act) and 
the feed freight assistance subsidy to 
livestock producers outside the Prairies 
(1995) encouraged efficiency and self- 
sufficiency in the grain and livestock 
sectors. A one-time payment of $1.6 
billion, with an additional $300 million in 
adjustment funds over the next three 
years, helped former beneficiaries adapt 
and invest in new opportunities. 

• The Western Grain Marketing Panel 
consulted industry and offered 
suggestions to modernize the governance 
of the Canadian Wheat Board (CWB), 
provide greater flexibility in CWB 
operations and services, and offer farmers 
a wider range of grain marketing options. 
As the minister responsible for the CWB, 
Goodale continues to work on 
amendments to the Canadian Wheat 
Board Act based on the panel's July 1996 
recommendations. 



Goodale provided leadership during the 
Canadian government's successful 
defence of supply management principles 
against an American challenge through a 
North American Free Trade Agreement 
dispute panel. The panel upheld Canada's 
right to apply tariffs to certain U.S. 
imports. 

The Canadian Adaptation and Rural 
Development Fund (1996) provides $60 
million annually for national and local 
rural development and community 
diversification programs. 

The Matching Investment Initiative 
(1995) allows the department to match, 
one for one, industry contributions to 
collaborative scientific research projects. 
By mid- 1997, more than 1,000 
agreements on projects totalling more 
than $42 million in research and 
development had been established. 



82