I received this week a formal notice from the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers about a message I sent a few days ago to my supporters and which was posted on my Facebook page.
In this message, I denounced the actions of the maple syrup cartel and I explained how this organization persecutes honest and courageous producers like Angèle Grenier, a Beauce producer who was fined $300,000 because she sold her syrup directly to a New Brunswick buyer without going through the Federation’s marketing board.
The Federation’s lawyer, Louis Coallier, asks me to apologize for having written that it is not producers like Ms. Grenier who are outlaws, but rather that “from my point of view, they are the outlaws.”
He also asks me to remove this statement from my Facebook page with a statement to the effect that it is unfounded, not supported by the judicial decisions rendered in Canada.
I apologize to the Federation for suggesting that its actions are illegal, which is inaccurate.
Indeed, and I am well aware of it, the powers exercised by the Federation are completely legal and supported by the judicial decisions rendered in Canada.
That’s the problem.
While cartels are normally banned in almost all sectors of the economy, our governments have given power to this one and some others to control production and to persecute producers who refuse to comply with their dictates.
I did not express myself correctly when I implied that the Federation is an outlaw. What I wanted to say, and what will replace the contentious sentence in my original message, is that from my point of view, the law should be changed so that it is the Federation, not people like Angèle Grenier, who will be considered an outlaw. In a free society, such controlling and authoritarian organizations should not exist.
I will continue my fight so that one day, the law changes and they are abolished.