In this file:


·         10 Things Canada Wants from NAFTA Modernization

… nowhere near what we want it to be…


·         If NAFTA ends, is Canada’s food sector prepared?

Economists say the meat and grain sector will suffer



10 Things Canada Wants from NAFTA Modernization


By Anna-Lisa Laca, MILK, Online and Business Editor

via AgWeb - Nov 8, 2017


Discussions to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) have been underway for a few months. Shaun Haney, founder of made his way to Las Vegas to help producers attending the MILK Business Conference understand NAFTA from Canada’s perspective.


“I think from a Canadian perspective a lot of producers in Canada are really discouraged after round four just went, to be honest, nowhere near what we want it to be,” he says. “We want a speedy conclusion to these talks so we can go on doing trade and business together.”


The next round of talks are set to begin November 15. Agriculture interests from all three countries are hopeful an agreement can be reached.


“When we look at beef and pork, Canada and the U.S. are all completely on the same page,” Haney says. “They're working together to lobby government on both sides of the border.”


Dairy is another story. Most producers are aware that Canada wants to protect its supply management system, but did you know that is just one of a list of 10 issues Canada hopes to address in a renegotiated agreement? Our northern neighbors hope to take on several cultural issues in addition to trade issues as NAFTA becomes modernized.


1.    Labor standards. According to Haney, Canadians are not thrilled with the conditions many workers experience in Mexico. They’d like to see that improved.

2.    Environmental standards. Global warming anybody? Canada wants the three countries to include language in NAFTA 2.0 related to protecting our environment.

3.    Gender rights.

4.    Indigenous rights. Haney says for the most part, this is related to Native Americans.

5.    Reforms to investor-state dispute settlement process. Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland wants "governments to have an unassailable right to regulate in the public interest."

6.    Expanded procurement...

7.    Freer movement of professionals...

8.    Expand and protect cultural exemptions…

9.    Maintain a process to regulate anti-dumping...

10.  Protect supply management...





If NAFTA ends, is Canada’s food sector prepared?

Economists say the meat and grain sector will suffer


by Ed White, The Western Producer (Canada)

Nov. 9th, 2017


Bombardier responded to American trade action by marrying a foreign competitor and deciding to move some production to the U.S.


Canadian dairy processors have responded to supply management’s restrictions by buying companies and expanding into the U.S.


How would Canadian-based food companies respond to the cancellation of the North American Free Trade Agreement?


Some economists say that’s something any exporter of food products and ingredients is probably now pondering.


“Agri-food is even more vulnerable than Bombardier or aeronautics because of the fact that the U.S. can use a number of narratives to justify an embargo or extra (restrictions placed on food),” said Dalhousie University food industry expert Sylvain Charlebois.


“You can use public health, food safety, regulations, unharmonized regulations around labelling. There are so many.”


For most food companies, the United States is both a big market and a source of ingredients. So what do they do about U.S. President Donald Trump’s repeated threats to tear up NAFTA?


Three economists said the food industry in North America is such an integrated business that any border problems will be costly for everybody.


“It’s very alarming for food companies,” said Al Mussell of Agrifood Economic Systems, an analysis firm from Guelph, Ont.


Some companies will probably focus on non-U.S. markets for future growth, including those in Asia and Europe. Canada has a new trade deal with the European Union and is talking with both the remaining Trans-Pacific Partnership members and China about future deals.


Charlebois worries that some Canadian companies will simply forget about trade, with that al-ready being a problem in Canadian processing.


Too many Canadian companies are small and choose to just serve domestic markets.


Bertrand Montel, an economist with Groupe AGECO, said food companies need togo through their entire supply and processing chain to see what inputs and outputs might be affected by any sudden ending of NAFTA.


“I would encourage processors to have a quick assessment of their products,” said Montel.


The economists agreed that small border tariffs aren’t the biggest factor spooking food companies...