June 19, 1903 (9th Parliament, 3rd Session)


Sydney Arthur Fisher (Minister of Agriculture)


Hon. Mr. FISHER.

That it is expedient to bring in a Bill to regulate the manufacture and sale of oleomargarine. butterine or other substitutes for butter.
That resolution was broad enough to take in this new idea that the minister has got into his head about process butter. I spoke strongly in support of my motion and I produced statistics to show that oleomargarine was then being manufactured largely in the United States, was being imported into Canada and that a factory was about being started for the manufacture of it in Canada. After this motion, the then Conservative government came down with a resolution to prohibit the importation, manufacture, and sale into Canada of oleomargarine. The present Minister of Agriculture then rose in his place to oppose the passage of my resolution and he spoke as follows :
But, Mr. Speaker, anxious as I am to see the agricultural interests, and especially the dairy interests of the country carefully guarded-and I say this as representing one of the greatest dairy counties in this Dominion, the county, according to the last census, which made the greatest amount of butter of any county in the Dominion-still I do not wish to see the dairy interest guarded at the expense of any other interest in the Dominion. If any person chooses to put upon the market an article which is not hurtful in itself, and which is properly stamped and shown to be such an article, if it does compete with the producers of butter it will be merely an extra stimulus to them to make a better article with which this spurious article cannot compete. But I do not believe it would be right or wise for this parliament absolutely to prevent all the people in this country from producing an article which in itself is not hurtful, and which, at the same time would be stamped so as to show its true nature.

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