FROM THE HILL: MP calls for real solutions to bring down food prices
On Wednesday, after a new report from Dalhousie University revealed that close to three out of five Canadians are worried about compromising on nutrition due to high food prices at the grocery store, NDP MP Richard Cannings (South Okanagan – West Kootenay) joined NDP leader Jagmeet Singh in reiterating his call for the Liberal government to adopt New Democrats’ proposal to bring down food prices.
To up the pressure, this Friday, Singh will bring the fight directly to Justin Trudeau’s home riding and demand that he stops propping up big grocer CEOs and start taking action to bring down food prices.
“Healthy food is vital to everyone’s well being. CEOs are jacking up prices and it is driving people to switch out healthier food options for less healthy ones that they can afford. It shouldn’t be like this.” said Cannings. “The government has options in front of them, but they don’t want to do what’s necessary to help Canadians if it means taking a stand against their rich CEO friends.”
Two weeks ago, Singh introduced the Lowering Prices for Canadians Act, legislation that gives the Competition Bureau more power to increase competition and lower prices, increase fines for price-fixing and price-gouging, and close loopholes that let big grocery chains price out the competition. Under Trudeau, food prices increased by 30 per cent. Meanwhile, Canada’s three largest grocers— Loblaws, Sobeys, and Metro — collectively earned more than $3.6 billion in profits in 2022.
For 21 months, food prices outpaced inflation, and Trudeau did nothing. And despite all his grandstanding, Pierre Poilievre is not who he says he is. During his nine years in government, food prices increased by 25 per cent. Ground beef by 128 per cent and coffee by 89 per cent. He had his chance to go after corporate greed, but instead, he gave large grocery chains like Loblaw billions in tax giveaways.
“While Justin Trudeau sits on his hands, Pierre Poilievre’s track record speaks for itself — he votes against measures that put money in people’s pockets while supporting policies that help rich corporations increase their profits on the backs of working families,” added Cannings. “Real leadership is about taking action that helps people, not sets up rich CEOs to make more money. The NDP has proposed solutions to bring down sky-high prices. It’s now up to the Liberals and Conservatives to get on board.”