Press Releases

Alberta Wheat Commission Urges Government to Mitigate Potential for Rail Strike

With a potential CN Rail strike looming, AWC encourages government to step in.

(Calgary, Alberta) – The Alberta Wheat Commission (AWC) is urging the federal government to take the necessary steps to encourage negotiations between CN Rail and union representatives to avoid any disruptions in rail transportation service.

"There is a lot of grain to move right now and with inland terminal storage capacity at 90%, any work stoppages would result in further delays for grain movement," says AWC Chair Kent Erickson. "Growers depend on the rail system to move product to export markets and the supply chain, when operational, has not able to meet the demands of this year’s harvest."

AWC is urging Minister Raitt, Minister of Transport, and Minister Leitch, Minister of Labour to be ready to take immediate action if a rail strike occurs and minimize any potential economic impact that would come from a labour dispute.

"We are already facing a dire situation for grain movement in Canada, and that will be further compounded in the event of a work stoppage," adds Erickson. "A rail strike could have potentially devastating and lasting effects on our growers, domestic supply chain partners, international buyers and the national economy."

The Canadian economy relies on an effective transportation system to trade Canadian agricultural products. If our growers are not able to rely on rail transportation to export their products, they will need to look at alternative transportation methods. In addition, if Canada is not able to meet our trade obligations, our buyers will also look at alternatives for sourcing their food products.

For more information please contact:

Amanda Ryan
Communications Manager
P. (403) 219-7902 C. (587) 777-6344
Email

The Alberta Wheat Commission is a producer-directed organization representing the interests of and serving as a single voice for all of Alberta’s 11,000 wheat producers. www.albertawheat.com