End of supply management: Saputo is not in agreement with Mulroney

Fin de la gestion de l’offre: Saputo n’est pas d’accord avec Mulroney

Photo: Graham Hughes The canadian Press
It is the system of classification joint that has been adopted by Canada, which is more problematic, according to the chief executive officer of Saputo, Lino A. Saputo son.

The large dairy processor Saputo does not agree with former prime minister Brian Mulroney, who advocates an end to the system of supply management.

“I do not agree with Mr. Mulroney. He wants to abandon the whole system. Me, I do not believe that it is necessary to arrive to it “, replied the chairman of the board and chief executive officer of Saputo, Lino A. Saputo son, at the end of the annual meeting of shareholders, Tuesday in Laval.

Mr. Mulroney, who advises the Trudeau government in its relations with the United States, continues to advocate for an end to the system of supply management in return for financial compensation to canadian farmers. But Mr. Saputo to adopt a more nuanced stance. “I’m not against the canadian system ; it works for Canada. “

It is the system of classification joint that has been adopted by Canada, which is more problematic, according to him. “For the past two years, Canada has wanted to have more global market shares, so they have released a 7 class. “It gives Canada the advantage of the protection of classes 1 to 4 in the price and provides access to the international price with the surplus in the class 7. Therefore, they can compete with the whole world [with the surplus]. According to me, this is not fair. Either we want to have a system with supply management, we want to be open to the international market, ” said Mr. Saputo.

According to him, this combined system does not exist elsewhere. “We have to abandon the class 7. And I think that the Americans — not the president, but the american producers — are right when they say that the canadian system is not fair, ” said Mr. Saputo.

In addition, a proposal on the rights of the person, filed by BC Union and a group called SomeofUs, supported by the Movement of education and defence of shareholders, has been beaten to 74% after a secret vote during the assembly. This proposal was aimed at asking Saputo to declare the process that he uses to ” identify and analyse the risks, actual and potential violation of human rights in all its activities and of its supply chain “. The question of the freedom of association (unionization) has been mentioned.

The board of directors opposed it, claiming that it has already adopted a code of ethics in the matter. It is also mentioned in the circular that 72% of the employees of Saputo international, mainly in Australia and Argentina, are unionized, 32 % in Canada and 29 % in the United States.

Lower profit

Saputo has posted a profit in the first quarter, down 37 % compared to last year, due to a number of negative factors, including acquisition costs, operating costs, currency fluctuations and the prices of some of its products. The montréal-based company reported a net profit of 126 million, or 32 ¢ per share, for the quarter ended June 30, compared to 200.3 million, or 51 ¢ per share, for the same quarter a year earlier. The adjusted profit has been restated to 160,3 million, or 41 ¢ per share, compared to 51 ¢ per share last year. Revenues rose to 3.27 billion, while they were 2.89 billion last year.

The company has also announced a 3.1% increase in its quarterly dividend to 16.5 ¢ per share.