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SESSION 2. INTERNATIONAL TRADE.
Honorary chairman, ROBERT WALLACE, emeritus professor of agriculture and
rural economy, University of Edinburgh, Scotland. Chairman, Dr. C. W. LARSON, chief, Dairy Division, United States Department
of Agriculture. Secretary, H. H. Wing, professor of animal husbandry, New York State College of Agriculture, Cornell University.
MEMORIAL CONTINENTAL HALL, Washington, D.C., Wednesday, October 3, 1923–9.30 a. m. Chairman LARSON. Ladies and gentlemen: The plight of the wheat farmers of this country has turned out to be the plight of the dairymen this morning. The Hon. Sydney Anderson, president of the Wheat Council of the United States, was scheduled for the chairmanship this morning, but because of his need in Chicago to-day, where that council was meeting, it was not possible for him to be here. I am therefore going to try to substitute for him.
There is a rule of the congress which provides that when an author of a paper is not present, that paper must be passed on to the bottom of the program of that session. Then when we reach that paper a vote will be taken to determine whether the paper will be presented by some one other than the author.
It so happens that the author of the first paper is not present and, according to rule, it will be necessary to pass that subject until the others have been completed.
The first speaker this morning, therefore, I want our honorary chairman to introduce. I would like that pleasure myself, but we want Professor Wallace, of Scotland, to have that honor. Professor Wallace. [Applause.]
Honorary Chairman WALLACE. Mr. Chairman, ladies, and gentlemen: It is my great pleasure to introduce to you this morning Mr. J. A. Ruddick, who is the Dairy and Cold Storage Commissioner of Canada. The subject of his paper is, “ Some aspects of the international trade in dairy produce."
In a word I want to say to you that Mr. Ruddick has been trained in the proper school. Mr. Ruddick was first brought up practically in trade, and he knows his business from the foundation. Then he joined Doctor Robertson's staff (Doctor Robertson has been the greatest dairy administrator of Canada), and Mr. Ruddick is now here to tell us what we want to know about his subject. I shall not stand between you and the lecturer, but will ask Mr. Ruddick to address you. [Applause.]
Mr. j. A. RUDDICK. Mr. Honorary Chairman, Mr. Chairman, ladies, and gentlemen: I would just like to say one word before I begin my paper, as to the success which has attended this congress up to the present time. I want, in a word, to congratulate the officers and those who have been charged with this organization on the splendid way in which they have performed the task. Everything has moved along smoothly and without the slightest hitch, and I am sure you will all agree with me that, apart from the congress itself, we have enjoyed our stay in Washington up to this time.
I have one word to say on that. Coming from Canada, it is a little difficult for me, as well as other delegates, to consider ourselves as foreigners in the United States. [Applause.] Our relations for many years, so far as I am concerned, have been so close with the people of this country that I always feel at home when I come over here. I had two brothers; one of them died an American citizen and the other is still an American citizen, and my life's partner came from the State of New York. [Applause.] She says she is an American yet, although under the law she is a British subject. But what can you do anyway with a woman who presents you with your only child on the Fourth of July? [Laughter and applause.)
Now, Mr. Chairman, I understand that time is precious and I shall not waste any more of it in preliminaries.
SOME ASPECTS OF THE INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN DAIRY
John A. RUDDICK, Dairy Commissioner, Ottawa, Canada.
There has been an international trade in dairy products within the Northern Hemisphere for many years, but climatic and transportation conditions prevented any important movement of butter and cheese across the Equator until about 40 years ago. It was a momentous event in the dairy world when on January 17, 1881, the steamship Protos landed 100 tons of Australian butter in London in good condition. This successful application of mechanical refrigeration in the overseas transport of butter and cheese opened the markets of the Northern Hemisphere to the products of the extensive pasture lands of New Zealand, Australia, Argentina, and South Africa, and thus placed the dairy-produce market on a world's basis.
Not only did the advent of refrigeration improve the transport of such perishables as butter and cheese, but by providing facilities for safe storage over lengthened periods, markets were expanded in point of time as well as distance. Furthermore the better preservation of the quality in butter induced a much greater consumption and thus enlarged the market in that sense also.
The development of the dairy industry in the Southern Hemisphere was rather slow at first, but within the last 10 years the growth of the exports of butter and cheese from New Zealand, Australia, and the Argentine have been so large as to make profound changes in the direction and volume of the streams of dairy produce which supply the world's demand.
There is a considerable movement of dairy products, and always will be, between many different countries, for geographical and seasonal reasons, or to supply particular tastes; but as these pretty nearly balance themselves I have, in preparing this paper, confined myself largely to an analysis of the imports of butter and cheese into the United Kingdom of Great Britain.
The United Kingdom is not the only international market for dairy products, but it is the principal one, as it absorbs much more butter and cheese than all the other countries in the world combined.
During the years immediately preceding the war, Germany, next to the United Kingdom, was the largest importer of butter, but received only 16 per cent of the world's total exports, as against 67 per cent received by the United Kingdom. Belgium came next to Germany in that period as an importer of butter, but the total quantity amounted to only 2 per cent of the world's trade.
In the case of cheese the trade was somewhat more distributed before the war. The United Kingdom absorbed about 50 per cent of the world's exports, France and Germany something like 9 per cent each, United States a little over 8 per cent, and Belgium 5 per cent, and so on.
It may be of interest to note the changes in the imports of butter and cheese into the United Kingdom by countries during the last 20 years. In 1903 Denmark supplied 45 per cent of the total imports of butter. Russia came second with 12 per cent, then followed France, Holland, Canada, Sweden, and New Zealand in the order named, the latter supplying only 5 per cent. Italy and the Argentine came next with 2 per cent each, and the United States with 1 per cent. In 1914 Russia had increased her quota to 14 per cent and Denmark was reduced to 41 per cent. Australia took third place in that year with 12 per cent, and New Zealand advanced to fourth place with 7 per
cent. In 1922, the imports from Denmark were only 35 per cent of the whole, while Australia claimed 27 per cent, New Zealand 23 per cent, and the Argentine became an important factor for the first time with 9 per cent. For the year ending June 30, 1923, Denmark again supplied 35 per cent, New Zealand followed with 27 per cent, and Australia was down to 13 per cent, the exportable surplus being reduced by climatic conditions. The Argentine Republic's contribution was up to 10 per cent, and Canadian shipments were also increased to 3 per cent of the total. The United States, Sweden, France, and all other countries combined supplied 10 per cent.
In 1903 Canada supplied 68 per cent of the total cheese imported into the United Kingdom, United States 14 per cent, Holland 13 per cent, and all other countries combined 5 per cent. In 1914 Canada's contribution was reduced to 51 per cent and New Zealand jumped to second place with 28 per cent. Holland again supplied 13 per cent, Italy 4 per cent, United States and Australia each 1 per cent, and all other countries combined 2 per
cent. In 1922 New Zealand took the lead in cheese with 50 per cent of the total, Canada 39 per cent, Australia and Holland each 4 per cent, United States 1 per cent, Italy, South Africa, and Switzerland together 1 per cent, all other countries 1 per cent. In 1923 New Zealand supplied 52 per cent, Canada 32 per cent, Holland 7 per cent, Italy 3 per cent, Australia 2 per cent, United States 1 per cent, and all other countries 3 per cent. (Further details on this point will be found in Table I.)
The most striking feature of these figures is the rapid increase in the exports from New Zealand. That country is now the largest exporter of cheese, and if the exports of butter show the same increase in 1923–24 as they did in 1922–23 they will then exceed those of Denmark, and New Zealand will be the largest exporter of both butter and cheese of any country in the world.
The export trade in dairy products from New Zealand began in a very small way about the year 1883. In 1904, at the end of 10 years, the quantities exported 'were 35,000,000 pounds of butter and 9,000,000 pounds of cheese. For the year ending March 31, 1923, the exports were 142,000,000 pounds of butter and 145,000,000 pounds of cheese.
In 1914 Russia exported 118,000,000 pounds of butter. At the present time, as far as figures are available, Russia is a very unimportant factor in the international butter trade. As an offset to the disappearance of the Russian exports, it may be pointed out that in 1914 Germany imported 111,000,000 pounds of butter, and as far as I am aware very little is being imported at the present time. These two items, the decrease in the exports from Russia and the decrease in the imports into Germany just about balance each other.
(For the total imports, by years, see Table II.)
TABLE II.--Total imports of butter and cheese into the United Kingdom for
years ended June 30.
Another view of the international trade shows the remarkable development of the exports from the Southern Hemisphere since 1903. In that year the butter imported into the United Kingdom from south of the Equator was only 7 per cent of the total imports. In 1914 the proportion had risen to 21 per cent. In 1923 it was 44 per cent. The proportional as well as the absolute increase in the imports of cheese from the Southern Hemisphere is even more striking. In 1903 only 2 per cent of the imports of cheese came from that part of the world; in 1914 the south supplied 29 per cent, and in 1923 as much as 55 per cent. (See Table III.) TABLE III.-Imports of butter and cheese into the United Kingdom from the
Northern and Southern Hemispheres.