Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Outsourcing is short-sighted

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My initial impression upon reading your Dec. 16 editorial Gear Canada to create new jobs was that the writer was indulging in sarcasm. Sadly, as I read on I realized that the message is that manufacturing and agricultural jobs are better off going off-shore, allowing goods to crisscross continents and oceans before landing on our plates or stores.

Contrary to this advice, I must assert that many people are happy to grow food and process it for the consumption of their fellow citizens -- and take pride in doing so. Outsourcing is more often than not short-sighted, sacrificing traditional jobs for a fast return.

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Taking the long view, every inch of our agricultural land should be valued and protected for the present and Canada's future.

Foodstuffs never gain in quality or nutritional value by travelling huge distances to the consumer. Cheap food ends up having a high price.

We would be making a great mistake in allowing this kind of thinking and planning to go unchallenged. Relying on oil indefinitely to transport food ignores the issue of the future cost and scarcity of cheap fuel.

A recent movement in Ontario to curtail small agricultural production did not succeed, as wiser heads prevailed. Bigger is not necessarily better, as we will learn the hard way.

HENRY RASMUSSEN

Kenora

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition December 20, 2013 A14

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