Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 16/4/2014 (1139 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Dean Harder's commentary Grain, trains and autocrats (April 15) was a useful backgrounder on the value of the former Canadian Wheat Board in planning logistics of grain movement and accountability by the railways in accomplishing this.
Also lost with the demise of the CWB is the idea of fairness, as exemplified by the former quota system that gave all farmers access to market when grain was moving, as well as pricing, which was averaged over the course of the crop year.
Today, we are left with a mad scramble to deliver seed when space becomes available on a first-come, first-serve basis, which makes the farmer a competitor with his neighbour, and in the end devalues the process by creating winners and losers in a market the farmer has no control over.