RD June Leters 2016

Bottled pears
RD: Received my copy of Rural Delivery May 3. Just finished baking the oatmeal cookies and will take them to Sequin Seniors this morning to eat while we dance and listen to the music provided by our talented members.
    Could you explain more about the pears grown in glass on page 34 (“Comparing apples to (organic) apples” RD May 2016)?
    A week ago we had a two-inch snowfall, yesterday mayflowers are up and blooming in the bush. I thoroughly enjoy your publication and hope to continue reading it for a long time.
Yours truly,
Harvey Clare
McDougall, Ont.

(Thanks for the note, Harvey. We hope to have you as a reader for a long time. As for pears grown in glass, this is just a fun sideline for Boates Farm in Woodville, N.S. 
    Early in the season, bottles are placed over the tiny fruit and harnessed to the tree in such a way as to prevent them filling with rainwater. It doesn’t always work, but sometimes they get a nicely formed pear growing inside, and after harvest these bottles are used by Lunenburg’s Ironworks Distillery for special gift editions of their pear eau de vie, a true locally produced fruit brandy.
    It would be interesting to hear from readers about their own creative combinations of fruit and booze, ornamental and otherwise. DL)

A niggling question
RD: While I was writing the PIIFCAF (Preserving the Independence of the Inshore Fleet in Canada’s Atlantic Fisheries) story (“Keeping independent fishermen afloat” in RD Jan-Feb 2016) I had a question that was niggling in the back of my mind: what will be the effect of investment protection clauses in trade deals such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership and CETA (the Canada and European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement)? 
    I have since made an inquiry with my Member of Parliament, Bill Casey, asking whether protection for fleet separation and owner-operator policies might need to be written into legislation, since the viability of the entire inshore fishery depends on these policies, which go back to the first Trudeau government. After a long wait and frequent reminders, I received a response from Sandra Bales, Casey’s assistant. I have found no such clarification anywhere else, so I thought it might be worth sharing this reply with readers:
    “The CETA and TPP agreements will not impose any new requirements on Canada in regards to fleet separation or owner operator policies. In CETA and TPP, as well as Canada’s other free trade agreements, Canada reserves the right to maintain regulatory and policy flexibilities for the fisheries sector, including the licensing of fishing and related activities. 
    “These flexibilities are specifically maintained by including reservations for the fisheries sector (in the annexes to the Cross-Border Trade in Services and Investment chapters in Canada’s trade agreements). This essentially carves out these activities from investment and trade in services obligations, which would otherwise require Canada to offer non-discriminatory treatment to our trade agreement partners.”
David Boehm
Truro, N.S.