The Windsor Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce holds a news conference on PACA, August 22, 2017. (Photo by Maureen Revait)

Growers Looking For PACA Program

Local fruit and vegetable growers are urging the government to create a system for bankruptcy protection between buyers and sellers.

They are looking for protection similar to that offered by the Perishable Agriculture Commodities Act in the United States. Through this system if a buyer goes bankrupt, the seller can still have access to the funds they are owed. Canadian growers used to have access to the system when selling in the US but that access was were removed in 2014 because Canada does not offer similar protections for US growers.

Local grower Jim DiMenna, who is CEO of Red Sun Farms, says it’s bad for his business and the market.

“Producers in the United States may not want to sell to Canada because they don’t have that protection, but more importantly the Canadian producers, the Canadian marketers need that protection because our margins are thin. Our companies are growing but the margins are severe,” says DiMenna.

The growers say the creation of a program to mirror PACA was an election promise from the Liberal government. They are hoping to bring attention to the issue to get it done.