Canada’s dairy subsidies have been a controversial topic during the North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations. For many years, the U.S. dairy industry has claimed that their Canadian counterparts are heavily subsidized through their dairy supply management program.
The U.S. says that supply management program, and the Class and pricing systems in place, creates an unfair playing field. The website Dairy Herd Dot Com says Canada has issued a report that says the U.S. should examine its own dairy subsidies before pointing the finger at Canada. Dairy Farmers of Canada commissioned the 588-page report that looks into the role that subsidies play in the U.S. dairy market. The report says that 73 percent of returns that American dairy farmers received in 2015 were the result of subsidies, including the Margin Protection Program and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.
The Canadian report says those subsidies returned $12.06 per hundredweight. Sean Haney is the founder of the Canadian ag website Real Agriculture Dot Com, who says the report is tilted in favor of Canada. However, he also says it’s important to remember that there is probably some truth to the report as well.