Supply Management: What It Is and Its Pros and Cons
The tradition of letting the government regulate the supply of dairy products in Canada has lasted for more than half a century. While voices of reassembling this system have been raised by some interest group, many benefitted from such management style. The detailed measures of the Canadian diary regulation system demonstrate great patience and consistency in protecting the welfare of its farmers, while potentially jeopardizing the wellbeing of the entire industry, including the long-term benefits of the ones they are trying to protect. This paper focuses the pros and cons of Canada’s dairy supply management system and offers some practical advices on its future improvements. It is not an analysis of the current or future status of the dairy sector in Canada, but how it reacts under current supply management regulation. Supply management has been long criticized and supported by different people of interests. While it is true that many of the problems existing in today’s dairy industry are caused by supply management, the system shouldn’t take all the blame. Supply management has indeed improved a lot over the past decades and has already taken measures to resolve the conflicts mentioned above. It has evolved to be a better fit for the highly centralized, capital-oriented and globalized dairy sector today.
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