Full text: The dairy lobby briefing binder found on the floor of the Conservative convention

National Post
Detail from a Dairy Farmers of Canada briefing binder National Post James Alexander Michie

Detail from a Dairy Farmers of Canada briefing binder. This image of Conservative leader Andrew Scheer was in a section discussing the group's social media plan. Dairy Farmers of Canada/Matthew Bexte

There is no doubt that, for decades, one of the most powerful lobbyists in Ottawa has been Canada’s dairy producers. In fact, former finance minister Joe Oliver has even compared his tactics with the famous US arms lobby. “We’ll be taking supply management from their cold, dead hands”, Oliver wrote in 2016.

It should be noted that, for the first time, a leaked information folder from Dairy Farmers of Canada provides a unique window into these tactics. The document, found at the National Convention of the Conservative Party in Halifax, was made public during the weekend in a series of publications on social networks.

Thus, in a statement, dairy producers in Canada told National Post that the “was stolen from a delegate at the convention” folder. Bexte described the theft report as “categorically untrue” and likewise emphasized that he obtained the document from a fellow delegate who found him abandoned. On the floor of the plenary room of the convention.

The most outstanding

Notably, this is a very sophisticated operation that generally focuses on lobbying marketing to portray Canadian dairy farmers as just a group of humble family farms trying to make a living. This folder shows an incredibly sophisticated and well-financed political lobbying operation.

In this way, the delegation of producers of dairy products from Canada included 25 people from all over the country. They hired hospitality suites, organized meetings with high-level curators such as Ed Fast and organized an important reception at the Old Triangle Irish Alehouse in Halifax.

Likewise, the folder contains specific instructions on how representatives of dairy products can point and approach conservatives at the reception. In fact, it reads “It would be recommended to use the farmers present to mingle with delegates and talk about the importance of supply management”.

Now, it is necessary to emphasize that the extract of the most widespread folder is a section under the title “Safety Net”. In it, the producers of dairy products observe that even if the membership of the Conservative Party is opposed to the management of supplies, Scheer’s office has assured him that he will not place supply management on an electoral platform “regardless of the outcome at convention”.

Source: Tristin Hopper | National Post

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