Farmers Forum staff
GUELPH — More than half of Ontario crop farmers last year were asked to pay a surcharge to cover a tariff on fertilizer, a recent survey of about 1,000 farmers reported.
That doesn’t sit well with Grain Farmers of Ontario chair Brendan Byrne.
“We are now over one year into the tariffs on fertilizer that were downloaded as a cost to farmers,” Byrne said. “We are the only G7 country to keep fertilizer tariffs as other countries prioritized food production. We want to re-state that the money needs to be returned to the farmers who paid the cost.”
But two weeks after Byrne’s comments, the federal budget denied his demand. Ottawa will not return money to farmers who paid a tariff on Russian fertilizer but will put the money into a climate change grant program.
The RealAgriStudies survey commissioned by Grain Farmers of Ontario, found that more than one in six farmers surveyed experienced a fertilizer supply shortage last year.
The survey also found:
• Approximately half of farmers indicated that they used less fertilizer in 2022 because of the increased price of fertilizer
• 25 per cent indicated they made changes to their crop rotation
• 25 per cent of farmers indicated they will be making changes to their 2023 crop rotation, with over half indicating a likelihood they will grow more soybeans
• 17 per cent of farmers have indicated their retailer has notified them of potential fertilizer shortages.