Feds warned agricultural sector near ‘tipping point’ due to blockades

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OTTAWA — The federal government is being warned that Canada’s agricultural industry is near the “tipping point” as blockades erected to protest a pipeline project in B.C. continue to wreak havoc with the country’s rail system.

Mary Robinson of the Canadian Federation of Agriculture says farmers and producers are paying a heavy price despite have nothing to do with the dispute over the Coastal GasLink pipeline.

Robinson says that is because the blockades are causing propane and feed shortages for farmers and making it difficult — or impossible — to get their products to market.

Robinson says it is too early to talk about compensation, but predicts farmers will feel the impacts for years to come.

She says the federal government needs to take decisive action to address the situation and start working on a long-term plan for preventing such rail disruptions in the future.

The federation is expected to raise its concerns directly with Agriculture Minister Marie-Claude Bibeau when she addresses its annual general meeting later today.

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