Mr. Speaker, I listened intently when the minister of agriculture spoke. He said that not all programs were perfect and that some people from time to time may fall through the cracks. We also recognize, according to Statistics Canada, that net farm income dropped in 1996-97 by 55% and is projected to drop by another 35% in 1997-98.
What would my hon. colleague expect the minister of agriculture to say to farmers from the Annapolis Valley who for the past three years have experienced drought conditions and cannot qualify under the AIDA program or any other program, or to those farmers who in the last few years came into the farming business and are unable to benefit from this program?
The problem was beyond their control. It was something that happened to them. It was not something they mismanaged. It was just something that happened. What would my hon. colleague expect the minister of agriculture to do?