Grain Transportation Policy and Transformation in Western Canadian Agriculture

This paper provides an overview of grain transportation policy in Canada over the last 100 years, including the inception of the Crow Rate, the replacement of the Crow Rate with the Western Grain Transportation Act(WGTA), and finally, the repeal of the WGTA. Particular emphasis is placed on the structural change to the western agricultural economy that occurred following repeal of the WGTA in 1995. When grain transportation subsidies were removed, industry responded quickly to market signals through a diversification of crop patterns, an increase in livestock production, and an increase in value-added processing. Key Words: transportation policy, diversification, structural change

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