Chickens at Legislative Assembly

Posted: Mar 24, 2020

Fredericton, November 18, 2019 – The National Farmers Union of New Brunswick (NFU-NB) will mark the opening of the NB’s Legislative Session by protesting with avian allies

For more than ten years, NFU-NB has been campaigning for family farms and for recognition of agriculture as a driver of community economic development with adequate financial support. In these ten years, local food and local agriculture have become increasingly important in popular consciousness, and the enthusiasm for local food can be felt almost everywhere in the province. However, many of NFU-NB’s claims, such as the creation and promotion of a logo that would identify New Brunswick products or the creation of targets for the supply of our public institutions, remain largely ignored. 

In the past year, New Brunswick, as elsewhere, has also seen growing interest in recognizing the urgency of climate change and for concrete solutions to climate change mitigation. As a society, we rely on the people of the land, the sea and the forests to sequester carbon and the preserve our natural resources, but they cannot work alone, without supports. 

In order to make the point, once again, that New Brunswick farmers must receive more support and that the vision of food sovereignty must be given more prominence in the department of Agriculture, hens will welcome incoming members for the legislative session. Despite the fact that farm eggs are in great demand, these laying hens can not be more than 199 on a small farm since this is the limit imposed by the supply management system which limits production for farms that do not have no production quota which makes the profitability of a small farm very challenging. We believe, as an organization that represents small-scale farms and young farmers, that it is essential that all supports be offered to newcomers to agriculture and this includes the possibility of producing enough to make a living while farming and without having to work off the farm. If the success of our department would be measured by the number of farms and people who make their living from agriculture as well as the percentage of that production that is consumed within the province instead of the volume produced, the policies coming out of it would surely be more favourable to the development of small community enterprises that are family farms.

We continue to advocate for a vision of agriculture that ensures the food sovereignty of our communities and we call on the hens of a member to spread this message. The chickens will be on the ground of the legislature at dawn and for the whole morning. NFU-NB President, Rébeka Frazer-Chiasson, and other members will be on hand to answer questions from the media.