May 6, 2020 –
The Dairy Processors Association of Canada (DPAC) acknowledged yesterday’s announcement from the Government of Canada as a step in the right direction, but that it is far from being sufficient for the entire food processing industry.
The Government’s announcement that it intends to increase the borrowing limit of the Canadian Dairy Commission by $200 million in order to support expanded storage capacity for cheese and butter is welcomed as the industry works hard to adjust milk supply with an unprecedented change in demand for dairy products and the expected ongoing uncertainty in the marketplace over the coming months.
DPAC looks forward to learning more on the details of the $77.5 million Emergency Processing Fund and the launching of the Surplus Food Purchase Program with an initial $50 million fund. These amounts will help but would not suffice to compensate part of the losses faced by the dairy processing industry alone given inventory losses and the various measures implemented in our processing facilities such as social distancing and personal protective equipment.
DPAC will be working with the Government on programming related to yesterday’s announcements, and also looks forward to an announcement on the trade compensation measures that have been promised to the industry.
During these challenging times, providing Canadians with a continuous and ample supply of nutritious dairy products while protecting employees’ health remains the top priority of dairy processors. The pandemic has brought unprecedented challenges to the entire country, and feeding Canadians remains the focus of the food supply chain. It is imperative that essential activities be treated as such by government programs.