2016 Amendments to Schedule “B” Operating Agreement for Chicken

The BC Chicken Marketing Board is seeking BC Farm Industry Review Board (BCFIRB) approval to sign the amended Federal-Provincial Agreement for Chicken – Schedule "B" Operating Agreement. BCFIRB will review the Chicken Board’s request under its independent statutory authority set out in the Natural Products Marketing (BC) Act (NPMA).

BCFIRB, as the B.C. supervisory agency and a supervisory signatory to the Operating Agreement must also make its own, independent determination as to whether it will approve the amendments. This includes an examination of the issues which would have been raised by the Primary Poultry Processors Association of BC should it have continued to pursue its concerns by way of appeal(s).

Background
BCFIRB Considerations and Expectations
Review Process and How to Participate
Supervisory Review Documents
Submissions
Decision

Background

There is a very long and complex history behind the currently proposed amendments to the Operating Agreement.  The following summarizes some of the key drivers:

  • Chicken Farmers of Canada’s (CFC) responsibility to allocate national growth using the principle of comparative advantage as per s. 23(2) of the Farm Products Agencies Act.
  • CFC’s outstanding strategic plan goals related to differential growth.
  • Alberta’s request for additional production based on population, going back to at least 2007. Alberta withdrew from the Federal-Provincial Agreement on the basis its needs were not met.
  • Ontario’s subsequent request for additional production based on population.

As part of this history, an appeal was filed with BCFIRB by the Primary Poultry Processors association of BC (PPABC) in August 2014. The appeal was put aside by agreement between PPABC and the Chicken Board so that BCFIRB could address this matter in its supervisory capacity under s. 7.1 of the NPMA. As part of that process, the parties agreed to explore the potential of working with western counterparts in an effort to propose flexible, robust solutions to chicken allocation in Canada that would allow the industry to move forward in a manner that meets the intent of supply management.

BCFIRB Considerations and Expectations

BCFIRB is conducting its review through a principles/outcomes-based approach using SAFETI (Strategic, Accountable, Fair, Effective, Transparent, Inclusive). As required by s. 9 of the NPMA, BCFIRB must find that the proposed amendments are in accord with the British Columbia Chicken Marketing Board Scheme, 1961 and with “sound marketing policy” and comply with governing legislation, regulation and agreements.

To that end, BCFIRB expects submissions to include a SAFETI-based analysis of stakeholder positions, including argument and evidence related to:

  1. Are the proposed changes, including providing an additional share of growth to Ontario and Alberta, in compliance with governing legislation, regulations and agreements?
  2. Do the proposed changes address issues related to allocation decision-making?
  3. If the answers to (a) or (b) are no, why not and what would be the proposed remedies?
  4. In considering the answer to (b), are there potential implications arising out of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement over the course of the proposed Operating Agreement, including in terms of the allocation of new tariff rate quota and adjustments to domestic allocation?

Review Process and How to Participate

The following sets out process details, including written submission deadlines and dates for a potential in-person hearing. As the process unfolds BCFIRB may amend the deadlines and details as required. Industry stakeholders, including producer associations, related industries such as hatching eggs and other provincial and national chicken and supervisory boards are encouraged to consider providing written submissions as part of the process.

TIMELINE SUBMISSION
April 12, 2016 BCFIRB confirms whether further written submissions are needed (which would be due April 22) and/or confirms an oral hearing is required to address any outstanding issues.
April 18, 2016 Chicken Board to provide copy of BCFIRB's April 12, 2016 letter to industry stakeholders.
April 27, 2016 Chicken Board, PPPABC and CFC to provide written submissions supported by affidavits in response to the question posed in BCFIRB's April 12, 2016 letter.
May 11, 2016 (extended from May 4, 2016) Chicken Board, PPPABC and CFC to provide final response to the April 27, 2016 submissions.
June BCFIRB decision.

The BCFIRB panel reserves the right to raise follow up questions subsequent to receipt of all submissions received and/or determine if further process is required.

For more information contact Wanda Gorsuch, Manager Issues and Planning at 250-356-2465 or Email: Wanda.Gorsuch@gov.bc.ca.

Supervisory Review Documents

The following is a list of documents, including submissions, related to this review.

BCFIRB Process Documents

Submissions

BC Chicken Marketing Board

Affidavit Submissions

Primary Poultry Processors Association of BC

Affidavit Submissions

BC Chicken Growers Association

Chicken Farmers of Canada

Affidavit Submissions

Alberta Chicken Producers

Chicken Farmers of Saskatchewan

Further Submissions

On June 9, 2016 BCFIRB received a further submission from PPPABC following the final submission deadline (May 11, 2016). CFC and the Chicken Board were invited to comment on whether the panel should receive the PPPABC further submission.  After reviewing the objections of both CFC and the Chicken Board, the panel determined it would receive the PPPABC’s further submission and provided opportunity for CFC and the Chicken Board to provide submissions in response (June 24, 2016) and the opportunity for PPPABC to reply (June 28, 2016) to any CFC and Chicken Board submissions.

Other Related Documents

Decision