Plow-Share, Christian Farmers Federation of Western Canada
Organization profile published 1982

Year Published:  1982  
Resource Type:  Organization
Cx Number:  CX2602
Inactive/Defunct Organization
Abstract:  The Christian Farmers Federation is a voluntary organization of people who seek to make Biblical principles of justice and stewardship the basis of their farming activities. The Federation does research and develops positions on important agricultural issues in order to educate the public and to press for changes in government policies and priorities. Main areas of work for the Federation Include: the preservation of food land; justice issues in the marketplace; and the link between food production, economic structures and underdevelopment. The group publishes a quarterly magazine PLOW SHARE.

The editorial in the Winter, 1982, issue of PLOW SHARE comments on the plight of farmers in Canada: "Unfortunately, the logic of our present economic system seems to push for greater centralization of control over finances, resources and markets. Farm size continues to grow. The indebtedness of farmers to financial institutions increases, leading to loss of control.....Some would argue that farm people have little or no power on outside resources.

The editor then refers to two articles in the issue which point to some possibilities which, if implemented, give farm people more control. In an article entitled 'Beating the High Cost of Farming," Horace Baker points out that one of the areas where farms are most vulnerable is the pricing of farm inputs, commonly termed the cost-price squeeze. Baker suggests that a well-organized broadly-based, and comprehensive agricultural co-operative movement would go a long way to place control over inputs within the realm of the agricultural community. Accordingly, the editor suggests, if the majority of farm families across Canada were to join and support such a co-operative and purchase farm inputs collectively, the impact on the market fo farm inputs would be very noticeable.

Such a process would give farmers considerable negotiating room A second key area for the long-term stability of the farm population and rural communities is that the land values and farm tenure. Some ideas on this subject are contained in another contribution to this edition, titled To Whom The Land, by Bob Jacobsen. In another article, Farmworkers Engaged in Lonely Struggle for Justice, John Warnock reports on the efforts of B.C. farmworkers to organize themselves and the role and reaction of B.C. farmers in theis process.

The theme of the November 1981 Christian Farmers Federation convention was the relationship between techology and agriculture. The workshops and keynote address presently participants with opporunity to reflect on the way their dicisions about technology, as well as government policy and societal structures, have shaped their farms and daily lives. The convention presentations are reported in four articles in this edition.

This organization no longer exists.
This abstract was published in the Connexions Digest in 1982.
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