From The Western Producer April 20 2010
By Terry Boehm, National Farmers Union
Canada and the European Union are negotiating a new free trade agreement, the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA).
This agreement with the EU is no small matter for farmers. The CETA, if implemented, will, as much as the North American Free Trade Agreement or the World Trade Organization, transform Canadian agriculture and farms. And not for the better. The CETA will further intensify Canada’s farm income crisis.
The CETA would mean many changes, but none would be more negative or sweeping than its effect to extinguish farmers’ rights to save and use seeds.
Worse, the agreement would give enforcement powers to any corporation that asserted a farmer had infringed the company’s intellectual property rights.
The CETA would require Canada to implement the UPOV ’91 version of plant breeders’ rights (PBR). That version of the International Convention for the Protection of New Plant Varieties would virtually eliminate farmers’ rights to save, reuse and sell seed.
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Canada-Europe trade deal could virtually eliminate farmers’ rights to save seed: National Farmers Union
The third round of trade negotiations with Europe concludes this week
in Ottawa – National Farmers Union says leaked draft text reveals that
the Canada-Europe trade deal could virtually eliminate farmers’ rights
to save seed in Canada. GMOs exempt from the agreement as European
opposition continues. For more information see http://www.cban.ca/Resources/Topics/Trade
National Farmers Union, Press Release, April 21, 2010
Secret text of Canada-EU Trade Deal Released: The agreement may be the largest single issue on farm-policy horizon.
OTTAWA, Ont. NFU President Terry Boehm was in Ottawa Monday to
participate in the release of a draft text of the Canada-EU
Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA). The NFU is a
partner in the newly-formed Trade Justice Network, the group that
released the text. Boehm also spoke at a well-attended evening
meeting in Ottawa dealing with the CETA.
“We now have in-hand a proposed agreement that would reshape Canadian
agriculture: reducing farm support program spending; radically
rewriting the laws that govern farmers’ seed saving and re-use; and
probably in the future, opening another front in the attacks against
the Canadian Wheat Board and supply management,” said NFU President
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