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Printed by  Charles F.  Banfield, Printer to tbe King's  Most Excellent Majesty.
1024.  To His Honour Walter Cameron Nichol,
Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of British Columbia.
May it please Your Honour :
The Fifth Annual Beport of the Department of Industries of this Province is
herewith respectfully submitted.
Minister of Industries.
Parliament Buildings,
July 15th, 1924. Department op Industries,
Victoria, B.C., July 15th, 1924.
The Honourable John Hart,
Minister of Industries, Victoria, B.C.
Dear Sir,—In pursuance of section 9 of the " Department of Industries Act,"
I enclose herewith Annual Beport.
Yours truly,
Industrial Commissioner. Report of the Department of Industries.
To the Lieutenant-Governor in, Council,
Victoria, B.C
Sib,—In accordance with the " Department of Industries Act," the following report is made.
It contains:—
(1.)  Introductory Review of Industrial Conditions.
(2.)  The Potato-starch Industry.
(3.)  Loganberry-wine and Loganberry-juice Possibilities.
(4.)  Flax, Linen, and Binder-twine Production in British Columbia.
(5.)  Pottery-clays of British Columbia.
(G.)   Seed Production in British Columbia.
(7.)  Possible New Industries in British Columbia:—
(a.) Glass-bottle Industry:
(b.)  Copra Oil-crushing Plant:
(c.)  Electrical Equipment and Appliances:
(d.)  Sugar and Sugar-beet Production.
(8.)  Receipts aud Disbursements from the Development Fund.
The year 1923 was a year of steady advancement in British Columbia. Three hundred and
twenty-six new firms commenced business in the industrial field and the variety of articles
manufactured in British Columbia increased by 189.
Several special conditions affected the prosperity of the Province, which would have a
greater result in the general progress were it not for the general unsettled conditions throughout the world, especially in Europe. The dependency of progress iu Canada and British Columbia
on staple and progressive business conditions in Europe, the Orient, and the United States is
becoming more widely realized by the public.
Outside conditions, therefore, are responsible in lessening the reaction of British Columbia
to the bounteous grain-crop in Western Canada, the development of the Western shipping route,
the increase in the export trade in lumber, and the development of mining, fishing, agriculture,
and general industry. British Columbia, while not favoured with all its expectations in 1923,
has succeeded in building up a general feeling of confidence in its commercial and industrial
undertakings, and it is generally recognized by industrial and financial interests in Eastern
Canada, Great Britain, and the United States that British Columbia in the year 1923 established
through the development that took place during the year a sane and safe basis for development
and enterprise.
The outstanding industrial increase of the year was in the lumber industry. The prosperity
of the Province is to a large extent dependent on lumber, so that good returns to this industry
reacts in prosperity to many associated manufacturing enterprises catering to the requirements
of mill and logging camp.
The wood-working and sash and door plants experienced a year of fair business, with several
definite attempts at building up an export business. A development of the export business in
finished doors would provide a big expansion in the wood-working plants of the Province.
The mineral output of the Province registered a 12-per-cent. increase over the previous year
and many new ventures and prospects have successfully raised capital for their development.
The commendable efforts of the Minister of Mines in working for reductions of duty on mining
machinery will make new properties more easily brought to a producing stage. The industrial
field of British Columbia affords an excellent opportunity for a firm to undertake an extensive
foundry, machine-shop, and engineering establishment specializing in mining machinery and
requirements. The development of the industry and its future outlook would indicate this to
be a profitable field for  investment.    Such  an establishment would  also  be  a big factor  in R 6 British Columbia. 1924
assisting in bringing on such a development. A local plant could devise and design to the
requirements of the locality; could build to the system in use and in accordance with the plans
of local mining officials. By quick service through being in close touch and effecting speedy
delivery of machines and repairs, the industry, I am confident, would build up very soon valuable
connections, and succeed with profit in reducing the initial cost of the equipment, its upkeep
and repair.
At the present time the various machine-shops of the Province undertake this work with
other general lines for other trades. If one of them or a new outside firm were to concentrate
on mining, they would help the industry and themselves and be able at a reasonable cost to
solve the engineering problems of the pioneering miners and keep abreast of progress elsewhere
by specializing in a line that has an enormous future in the Province.
The fisheries industry showed a revival during the year; a fair pack was put up, with a
steady movement developing and an increase in the fresh-fish market. The whaling season
proved a fair one, with improvements in the prices obtained for oil and other products.
Several fish-oil and fertilizing plants operated at a profit during the year.
Iu the secondary manufacturing establishments the general improvement in the basic
industries of the Province reacted in a fair year for furniture plants, paint-factories, boot and
shoe factories, foundries, machine-shops, refineries, cordage, aud other industries. Fewer
failures were forced during the year and most plants showed a profit on the year's operations.
The close of the year showed the seasonal unemployment problem to be for the first time in
years practically non-existent.
The general feeling of confidence built up in financial and industrial sections relative to
British Columbia on account of the satisfactory year just past is more pronounced outside of
the Province than locally. By comparison British Columbia has forged ahead and in less
favoured countries and Provinces our advancement and progress is talked of much more than
at home. Many people are investigating our opportunities from outside and those sections of
the Province possessing alert, progressive, and optomistic semi-public bodies are obtaining the
benefit. The pessimist still holds sway in many districts to their detriment, and many places
have failed to reorganize their Boards of Trade, agricultural and community associations, and
so bring forward the advantages and opportunities of their localities. The year just past has
demonstrated the progress that can be made by districts having active Boards of Trade, Boosters'
Clubs, and active Councils. Results obtained by such organizations in a few city and rural
districts point the way to not only Provincial progress, but also to local progress.
Indications are that the feeling of security built up regarding British Columbia will enlarge
the number of inquiries for opportunities for investment. It is impossible for any one organization to put forward the claims of all places. Advancement awaits an awakening of remote
community sections of British Columbia. An effort on their part to publish and make known
the suitability of their locality and the natural advantages it possesses, a development of a
spirit of rivalry between districts, and, above all, a local confidence and initiative to back up
and start a local era of progress, an organized effort to give reliable advice and encouragement
to the new-comer is necessary. Developing a willingness on the part of the community to hasten
the comfort and livelihood of the new-comer is one of the main essentials necessary in British
Columbia to-day to ensure that progress in the Province which the year 1923 provides for by
establishing a foundation of general confidence.
Two attempts have been made in the Province to establish this industry, both initiated by
the same man; the first effort in New Westminster, the second in South Westminster. In both
instances the potato-growers were induced to subscribe to the capital of the company and the
usual evils in promotion enterprises were encountered in high overhead and big initial capital
outlay. Both plants turned out a fair product and found a ready market, as potato-starch and
dextrine command a preference over corn-starch.    It is largely used in the cotton textile trade.
The first company had a succession of difficulties in the operation of a dryer. This delayed
progress and involved costly experiments, which ultimately placed the company in financial
difficulties. 14 Geo. 5 Department of Industries. R 7
The second company was a continuation by the same technical expert, with the support of
the potato-growers, of the same costly experiments in drying. This time a tunnel dryer was
used, turning out a satisfactory product. The cost of handling was high and the capital find
overhead excessive to ever warrant a return to the shareholders ou their investment.
The Department has investigated the possibilities of this industry and finds that a success
is made of it in the State of Maine. The factories there are dependent upon a supply of cull
potato and operate for a seasonal period on the basis of a family enterprise or by a growers'
association in disposal of an otherwise waste product. The equipment is largely built by the
starch-manufacturers themselves at a small cost. In Canada three plants operate in Prince
Edward Island on much the same basis and are largely seasonal family industries.
The larger'yield Jier acre in potatoes in British Columbia and the development of grading
and co-operative marketing will bring forward the problem of disposing of culls and surplus
by an outlet, provided the grower is satisfied with a return of from $6 to $7 per ton. The
favourable climate and longer season in British Columbia would give a better chance for a
more extensive operation than in Eastern Canada and the States. From investigation this
Department is convinced the incentive for the development of this industry must come from
an organized co-operative effort of the growers. The incentive would be to stabilize the market
and ensure an outlet for cull and surplus potatoes rather than# from the profit derived from
the manufacture and sale of starch. The problem approached from the point of assisting the
grower offers considerable argument in favour of initiating an industry of this nature, provided
it is centred around an experienced operator. As an investment proposal disassociated from
the growing, grading, and marketing of potatoes, we do not feel that it offers sufficient inducement to warrant other than the employment of a minimum of capital for an operation that
would take advantage of peak years in potato production.
An analysis of local sample of potato shows it to contain 16.22 per cent, starch, 1.05 per
cent, sugar and dextrine, 75 per cent, water, and 6.73 tier cent, pulp residue.
Starch is a carbonate hydrate, undetermined composition found in granules of varying sizes
in different plants. Cereals contain most: Rice, approximately 73 per cent.; corn and wheat,
70 per cent.; corn, about 54 per cent.; peas, 50 per cent.; and potatoes as high as 20 per cent.
Starch is procured from such sources by grinding, steeping, or fermentation. The starch granules
are then washed out and allowed to settle after the liquid has been strained from the cellular
tissue. When it is boiled with dilute acids, glucose is obtained, and by the action of a diatase
it is converted into maltose. Dextrine is an intermediate product. This is also obtained by
heating alone.
This industry commenced and now operating in Prince Edward Island has never shown
big returns. The quantity of starch to be had from the potatoes depends on several things:
First, the quality of the potatoes, as well as the kind of machinery; but most of all on the skill
of those in charge. As a rule about 200 bushels of potatoes will make 1 ton of dry starch, but
often it takes 225 to 250, and seldom less than 200.
The price of starch varies. Sago flour, tapioca flour, and corn-starch all compete with
potato-starch,  and same being the case with Dutch and Japanese potato-starch.
During the war the price in Montreal rose to 10 cents per pound, but the prices quoted
lately at Montreal and Toronto were in the vicinity of 5 cents per pound. If corn is cheap it
is difficult to compete, in view of the fact that a bushel of corn produces about 30 lb. of starch,
and in addition to this the by-products derived from the manufacture of starch from corn are
easily marketable and in themselves produce a fair return to further lessen cost. Potato-starch,
however, is superior to all others and in certain requirements of industry commands a premium
over corn-starch. There is always a demand for this commodity and a market in Canada for
all the potato-starch which can be produced. It is generally difficult, however, to compete in
foreign markets by reason of cheap labour iu foreign potato-producing countries.
During the year 1921 Canada produced 578,900 lb. of potato-starch, valued at $28,088. This
works out at 5 cents a pound. In 1922 the production amounted to 1,010,000 lb., valued at
$46,816, which works out at 4 6-10 cents per pound.
The materials used in 1921 were 4,016,040 lb. of potatoes, valued at $13,872, or $6.90 pel-
ton.    In 1922 the potatoes used amounted to 0,650,864 lb., valued at $26,087, or $7.88 per ton. R 8
British Columbia.
During the year 1921 the importations into Canada of starch and allied products were as
Articles imported.
United Kingdom.
Other Countries.
British   gum,    dry    sizing,    cream    and
$ 43,708
Dextrine,  dry 	
$ 6,793
Starch,   including   farina,    corn-starch,
potato-starch, etc	
Glucose  or grape  sugar,  glucose syrup,
corn syrup,  or any syrup containing
any admixture thereof 	
British   gum,    dry   sizing,    cream    and
$ 6,203
$ 67,147
Dextrine,  dry	
$  4,450
Starch,    including    farina,    corn-starch,
potato-starch, etc	
Glucose or  grape sugar,  glucose  syrup,
corn  syrup,  or any syrup  containing
any admixture thereof 	
The exports from Canada were as follows:—
Articles exported.
United Kingdom.
Other Countries.
$        312
$     637
$        312
$      700
Lb.       |
16,690   |   $ 1,415
30   1               6
        1        1     	
Total value 	
$  1.421
While this report is not optomistic in respect to the possibilities of the potato-starch industry
in British Columbia, the large importations of this product and by-products into Canada show
an absolute demand for the commodity at a competitive price. There would consequently be
no trouble in disposing of the output. The fluctuation in price paid the local grower for potatoes,
his limited market, and the necessity of an outlet for culls and surplus would make a starch
industry an attractive side-line to the growing and marketing of potatoes.
The problem of the potato-grower, except in years of poor crop, will make the marketing
of his crop ever increasingly difficult as new areas are brought under production. To the grower
a starch plant would be an advantage. To the investor, on the other hand, it does not offer
an adequate return, except by the closest co-operation between the grower and operator. Potatoes
would require to be furnished at a low price and in guaranteed quantities to ensure an adequate
supply. 14 Geo. 5 Department of Industries. E 9
After surveying the possibilities of the industry, it would seem to be one requiring development by a Growers' Association in conjunction with grading and marketing. Several plants
could be established in the Province without overproducing for present requirements,- the
essentials of success being competent management and a sufficient supply of cheap potatoes.
During the year 1923 the Department of Industries followed up the w7ork of the previous
year in reference to developing a wine industry in the Province. The Liquor Control Board
supported the proposal by placing initial trial orders with the Vancouver Island and Mainland
growers, who turned out experimentally a fairly satisfactory product. An adverse feeling
existed against the wine through a previous attempt which resulted in a very inferior product
being placed on sale. It was felt, however, that a much higher quality could be depended on
when production was controlled by the growers rather than a strictly commercial manufacturer.
The increase in loganberry acreage coming into bearing gave a surplus yield over all possible
markets of 150 tons. With a view to providing an outlet the Liquor Board gave its encouragement to the commencement of the industry by placing orders.
The Saanich fruit-growers manufactured 9,000 gallons and the Mainland growers 3,000.
gallons. The wTine was put up according to best established practice and during the season
matured in wood.   An analysis of the product gives a content of 25 to 27 per cent, proof spirits.
In colour the wine is a deep rich red colour. It is intended to fully season and mature
this wine before placing it on the market. By cutting the profit below the amount usually
charged on beverages the Board hopes to introduce this product in the favour of the wine-drinking
public in preference to the imported vintage. The growers of British Columbia confidently look
forward to a considerable development in this industry, sufficient to take care of the increased
production in loganberries. The loganberry, as pointed out in our 1922 report, is a natural
wine-berry requiring no added material to commence fermentation. It lends itself to an easy
production of wine, and in the United States Pacific Coast section it is used extensively in the
manufacture of fruit-juice for soda-fountain, ice-cream, and social use.
A very extensive market exists for the product in the form of fruit-juice. The cost per
gallon is greater than in wine, due to the process necessary to arrest fermentation. The product,
on account of a large section of the country being subject to anti-liquor laws, enjoys a wider
market, and through the general temperate tastes of the public it affords a much larger field
for exploitation than the wine industry. In our last year's report we set out information relative
to the manufacture of loganberry-juice. Up to the present only two attempts have been made
in the Province to develop this business—that of the Kershaw Manufacturing Company, which
produces about 1,000 gallons of juice annually. The product of this company is of a very high
grade and the possibilities of the industry would produce good returns if started in a large way.
On the Mainland, G. W. Rathburn, of Lulu Island, puts up loganberry-juice from his 50-acre
berry-field.    He has the Kelly Confection Company interested with him in fcis enterprise.
Loganberry production is limited, on account of climatic conditions, to Oregon, Washington,
and British Columbia, and the preparation of this heavy berry yielder in the form of a marketable commodity will be a great boon to the berry-grower.
This Department is ready to furnish information and particulars to any one desirous of
engaging in this industry.
The Division of Economic Fibre Production at Ottawa reports that the yield and quality
of flax-fibre obtained at Agassiz has been the best secured in any part of Canada. The possibility
of growing hemp is being tested out this year.
The above established hopeful results and the fact that the Dominion Government offers
a bounty of 1 cent per pound on fibre produced in Canada manufactured into binder-twine; this,
taken in conjunction with the cordage-factory of the Department of Industries, indicated the
necessity of making a close study of what was being done in fibre production in Eastern Canada.
At present Canada has about twenty-three mills, all but two located in Western Ontario.
Dominion Government 'statistics show the south-west portions of British Columbia, Western
Ontario, St. Lawrence Valley, and the Maritime Provinces suitable for fibre production. Other
portions of the country lack nothing when seed production is the essential aim. Large quantities
of flax-seed are produced in the Prairie Provinces. I
R 10 British Columbia. 1924
During the year several flax-fibre producing sections of Ontario were visited to study the
method employed there to flax-fibre production. This industry, during the war, received a big
impetus through war requirements. At. the time of our inspection there was a fairly large
acreage in flax. The land is rented from the farmers by the company in many cases and the
preparation of the ground and seeding paid for on an acreage basis, the company supplying the
The crop is very hard on the land and successive crops on the same area never planted. In
some cases the farmer assumes full responsibility for the crop himself and sells the flax on a
tonnage basis to the flax company. The chief objection to this method is the necessity of obtaining labour to pull the crop when ripe. In many cases this is the summer task of the younger
members of the farming community. In the case of flax grown on company-rented land the
company hires and brings in Indian labour to do the greater part of this work. This is still
done for fibre production by hand-pulling and is a very hard task; the pay for the work running
as high as $21 per acre during the war and before the war as low as $8. It takes a very good
worker four days to pull an acre. Some professional pullers pull half an acre, but the average
would be nearer one-sixth of an acre per day. About the middle of July the crop is ready for
The flax is stooked until thoroughly dried. It is then hauled into the flax-mill, weighed, and
threshed. The threshing is done by hand. Two men to each set of rollers; each machine is
comprised of double rollers at each end of a belt-driven shaft. One man hands the sheaves to
a man in front of the rollers, who passes the heads, two sheaves at a time, repeatedly through
the rollers until all seed falls out. The sheaves are then thrown on a carrier and bouud by an
automatic binder into large bundles and taken to the fields for retting. The seed is gathered
from below the threshing-rollers and fed into a fanning and cleaning mill located on the floor
below. There were two sets of threshing-rollers and four threshers operating in one plant,
witli two men pitching sheaves to four others handing them to the threshers, one man raking
up seed, one boy feeding it to the fanning-mill, one man superintending the bundle-binder, one
man breaking and baling green tow, and. one boy building loads..
The short flax and all waste around the mill is put through a set of breakers, made into
green tow, and sold to upholsterers, oakum-manufacturers, aud other trades. The other fibre,
still bound by the original hand-binding of the flax-puller, is taken in large bundles to timothy
and clover fields. Here it is spread by hand in thin rows covering the entire field. It is left
for many successive dews and rains until retted to very dark-brown colour; then turned by hand
by men using long smooth poles. This ensures both sides of the row of fibre an equal time
exposed to rain, sunshine, and dew. When the woody portion of the plant is retted so that
it easily breaks up, the flax is hand-lifted and rebound in large bundles and taken back to the
mill. This is done late in the summer or early fall. The flax is then a dark-brown or black
colour and is separated from the outside fibre by breaking and scutching. The flax is first run
through the breakers once; then in small handfuls it is placed in a nick in a board and pressed
against dull steel revolving knives that beat the woody portion free from the fibre and remove
dark discolouration due to rust and dust. This is called scutching. This operation, like
previous threshing operation, is a very dirty one and men require masks and sponge breathing-
pads to keep their Jungs clear. The fibre after scutching is graded and bailed. It is chiefly
exported to the United States for manufacture into linen. It is rated to be equal to No. 3
Belfast fibre and some grades No. 2.
During the war Canadian mills made big profits, due to the increased demand and price
paid for fibre, seed, and linseed-oil. At present the high cost of labour has been a great detriment to the industry on the present low market. The industry relies on a large amount of
cheap labour as its one guarantee of success in the past. Recently, however, several promising
developments in machinery produce a possibility of developing this industry in British Columbia.
A very satisfactory trial has been made this year of a flax-pulling machine at Clinton and
Ottawa, Ontario. This machine is called the Vessot machine. This machine gives great promise
of meeting the requirements of the industry. It is still in the experimental stage, but trials
make it possible to complete a workable unit next year. The same inventor has designed an
economical flax-lifting machine to pick up the flax when retting is completed. 14 Geo. 5 Department of Industries. R 11
The Van Allen deseeder also does away w'ith an expensive equipment. This machine is
portable and can be moved from field to field and can handle 10 tons a day. The flax is fed
in by hand. The butt and stalls are gripped firmly between belts and the head is beaten out
by beaters without injuring the seed. The straw is rebound and could be moved to a near-by
meadow  for  spreading, and  retting.
The scutching of flax-fibre is very dirty, slow, and tiresome work as done at present by
hand. It is wasteful of material, dangerous, and expensive. A new machine to do this has
been brought out, called the Boby machine, and is used in a mill in Belfast. One of these
machines has been tried out at Linwood, Ontario, with satisfactory results, the machine doing
all claimed for it by the inventor. One machine; with unskilled labour will do the work of five
by the old wasteful method.
The foregoing developments in labour-saving machinery go a long way in removing the
only obstacle there could be to fibre production in British Columbia. Ciimatic conditions and
yield here are the best in Canada. Various areas of the Fraser A'alley are particularly suited
for carrying on this industry, which is rapidly becoming reduced to machine operations.
The reclaimed lands of Sumas and the Delta lands of the Fraser should produce a very
high-grade flax-fibre. Tests conducted at the Agassiz Experimental Farm rate the British
Columbia flax-fibre the highest produced in Canada. As a new farm product for British
Columbia it is worthy of consideration from the standpoint of a commodity whose production
would not tend to further depress the present low condition of the farm market. At the same
time it would add to the variety of crop and returns to the farmer.
Several attempts have been made to manufacture binder-twine from the cheaper grades
of flax. The resulting product is too soft and .the experiments have not been a success. The
longer fibre is too valuable for binder-twine use, bringing at present 20 to 25 cents, as against
5 to 7 cents for binder-twine, sisal, New Zealand flax, and manila.
Recently in Manitoba a company was organized to grow hemp iu the north-western portion
of the Province. It has interested the Government to put a bounty on hemp-fibre produced
for binder-twine production. A limited amount of hemp has been tried in Ontario, growing from
5 to 8 feet high. It is a very hard crop on the land and the low value of its fibre compared to flax
did not warrant any great development. The experiment on the Prairies will no doubt be
interesting. The problem will resolve itself into retting the stalk. Climatic conditions are
against field-retting and the chemicals in the river and slough water are against water-retting.
This year hemp is being grown experimentally at Agassiz. Hemp-fibre, being longer and
coarser than flax, is suitable for binder-twine, and it would be in the interest of the farming
industry to study closely its possibilities as applied to British Columbia. The extra growth of
fibrous plants in British Columbia, together with ideal outdoor retting conditions, should make
hemp-growing profitable. The possibilities of growing New Zealand flax, which also produces
a long and fairly hard fibre, should be tried out on the low-lying swampy grounds of the
Province, which seem to furnish all the requirements for the growing of the plant. Any extensive
development of a binder-twine industry in Canada has more possibilities in British Columbia
than elsewhere: First, on account of manufacturing climatic conditions; second, nearness to
supply of raw material, and also the centre of the demand for the product; third, in addition,
this Province offers soil and climate for the production of binder-twine fibre. This should be
a profitable industry when one considers the bonus of 1 cent a pound recently offered by the
Dominion Government.
Following the report of the Department on the clays of British Columbia as published in
1922, the Department sent various samples of British Columbia clays and kaolin to porcelain
and pottery works for test, lt also co-operated with the Department of Education in introducing a ceramic class at the Victoria Summer School. This class has developed an interest
in the clays of the Province and their possibilities, with the result that efforts are now put
forward to commercialize the instruction received. Several people are endeavouring to build
up a trade in local art pottery having distinctive Western characteristics.
From the samples of clay assembled by the Department of Industries for the Summer
School course, samples were taken of the Quesnel and Williams Lake clays and sent to Stoke-
on-Trent  and some to the porcelain-works  of the  Canada  General  Electric  Company,  Peter- R 12 British Columbia. 1924
borough, Ontario. Two of these samples, hard clay or china-stone, were found impossible from
a commercial standpoint. The grinding necessary to bring them to a proper degree of plasticity
for use in electric fixtures made them too costly. Many suitable clays break down in water;
consequently it is not profitable to use a clay or stone that required the grinding necessary in
these samples. They were very high in silica and required a high temperature in the kiln to
A sample of soft Williams Lake clay was found to break down readily in water, but lacked
considerably in plasticity and required a ball-clay added. The material used was Kentucky
ball-clay, 12 per cent. Generally English ball-clay is used. In this connection Canada has a
satisfactory ball-clay at Witlows, Saskatchewan. No doubt deposits exist in British Columbia
Thirty-four per cent, of Williams Lake clay was used with 12 per cent, ball-clay, 30 per
cent, feldspar, and 24 per cent, silica. This material was then sufficiently plastic to be formed
in moulds.
Several samples of porcelain ware were made and excellent results obtained. The shrinkage
was much less than the standard ware produced by the company, which has a shrinkage of
14 per cent.
The body burned to a very high state of vitrification and was unusually tough for a. composition of this nature. The materials used were an unwashed clay, yet in colour the samples
were only slightly off from standard ware. In the opinion of the superintendent and technical
expert, it is merely a matter of getting the materials and clays refined to the proper state,
and there was no question in his mind but what British Columbia clays, silica, and feldspar
would make a satisfactory electrical porcelain. A close inspection of the clay did not show
any mica, which was another point in its favour. The samples produced, together with the
fact that suitable silica and feldspar can be obtained, points out the possibility of developing
a pottery industry. There is a big demand for electrical porcelain and British Columbia itself
affords a market for a large quantity of large porcelain insulators and other electrical porcelain
fixtures, plumbing, and general chinaware. The small quantity of ball-clay required could be
readily imported until local deposits are reported. This industry affords an excellent opportunity
for development by British capital possessing the necessary expert and technical labour required
in an industry of this nature.
The elemental work done at the Summer School in Victoria will in time create a local
souvenir and art trade, -with staple lines in glazed tiles and flower-pot ware.
The reports of the operator and instructor are as follows:—
Summer School,
Victoria, B.C., July 10th to August 18th, 1923.
The clays assembled for the course were:—
Clayburn   (ground  shale). Sidney  Island.
Port Haney   (Maple Ridge). Clayoquot.
Three samples of Victoria, Nos. 1, 2, and 3. Two samples from Vernon.
Williams  Lake. One from Fanny Bay, V.I.
For the required purpose Clayburn was found to be too short or lacking the necessary plasticity,
but as an ingredient with other clays proved very good.
A working mixture was made, using Port Haney clay dried and pulverized to 1-16 inch with
1 per cent, of Clayburn added, and also Victoria No. 1 dried and pulverized 1-16 inch with 1 per cent,
of Clayburn. From these clays were made, by hand, vases, jardinieres, and book-ends, also several
castings from plaster moulds. These were subjected to slow drying and treated with colour-slip.
The ware is now set in kiln for the first burning process, known as " biscuit." Being drawn from
kiln on completion, the ware is treated with a variety of glazes and again fired to a temperature of
about 1,800° F.    The general effect on the finished product is good.
The next mixture of clay used is from Quesnel District (Big Moose Group) ; this is in lump
form and white; same is pulverized and screened to 1-16 inch; 50 per cent, of this to 50 per cent.
Victoria No. 1 dried and screened to 1-16 inch makes a good plastic mixture and proves good for
general work.
The Quesnel clay when used alone appears all right to the point of firing, but during burning
process fractures badly. 14 Geo. 5 Department of Industries. R 13
A mixture of clays which is found to be very good is Victoria No. 3 (a grey clay) screened to
1-16 inch; 75 per cent, of this to 25 per cent, of Clayburn sifted to 60-mesh per square inch appears
the best yet used for hand-working and also mould-casting, the latter from slip.
A consignment of three sacks of material from Williams Lake was delivered near the end of
the session—No. 1 a white silica clay; the other two a hard white substance. The official in charge
did not deem it advisable to treat this owing to the probable temperature required being too high
for the kiln as installed.    (Above clay not adaptable on account of not being tested.)
There are three samples of clay from Sidney Island. No. 1 is a screened clay with 5 per cent,
of sand added. No. 2 is a good finely screened clay, this being further screened to 60-mesh per square
inch, and 75 per cent, of same to 25 per cent, of Clayburn sifted makes an excellent plastic clay, good
for hand-working—slip for mould-casting or for wheel-working. No. 3 is in lump form, a blue clay
taken from 20 feet below surface-level and has much the same appearance as Victoria No. 1.
Other samples of clay delivered are Clayoquot, which comes in moist form, but owing to the
presence of flinty nodules requires drying, pulverizing, and screening. This is a blue clay and when
plastic works very well on wheel and should make good slip, there being no signs of checking under
somewhat strenuous drying.
From Vernon, B.C., are two small samples of blue clay in moist form, which also are rendered
to dust and screened to 60-mesh. Under burning test these are found to be of very short range,
showing an unusual shrinkage.
A small sample of shale from Fanny Bay, Vancouver Island, B.C. This requires the necessary
dry-pan and screen process as is usual in manufacturing shale, but a .small sample was prepared, and
reduced to 60-mesh per square inch. Good for general brick-making, requiring fairly high burning.
Suspect the presence of lime in this clay.
Victoria No. 2 clay was not used, being somewhat roachy. Samples of above clays in pulverized
form are on hand, together with small tiles burnt to compare with each variety of crude clay ; also
specimens of finished ware, being the body of the ware used in the pottery class.
With the exception of Clayburn and Sidney Island Nos. 1 and 2, all of the clays were taken
apparently direct from face of clay and preparation-work for required purposes done at school.
Foot-note of Suggestions and Observations by the Writer.—With the exception of Victoria No. 2
and Williams Lake Nos. 2 and 3 and possibly Sidney Island No. 1, on account of added sand the
above clays suitable (with special mention of Sidney Island No. 2 and Victoria No. 3) by using
certain proportionate mixtures for producing an art pottery adapted preferably to the darker glazes.
The several samples presented and some of the specimens done by students show an originality which
is unique for local clays. As a commercial proposition entirely on this class of work requiring a
skilled ceramic artist, potters, and practical burners, if the demand is assured and with procuring
the bulk of materials adjacent to Victoria, such a proposition may be considered feasible. In view
of the fact that the output as above could not be regarded as household or commercial necessities,
it is obvious that various products would have to be taken into account in which there is more reliable
demand, such as glazed tiles for hearthing and fireplace work, sizes of which of course vary, as: 4";
2" by V2" ; 6" by 3" by W ; 3" by 2" by %", etc.
The common flower-pot ware is worthy of consideration in view of the fact that small-size crates
cost $7 each in freight charges from Eastern Canada, whilst there .is a steady demand for this class
of goods in Victoria, up-Island points, and Vancouver.
On Thursday, August 9th, a display of work done by students was assembled and photographed.
Early in the afternoon these were transferred to " show-ground " for public exhibition. The different
processes from crude clay of several varieties, work done by hand, several by wheel and mould in the
prefiring stage, the biscuit stage, and finally the finished glazeware. There were numerous inquiries
and more than ordinary interest evinced in the exhibit.
Summer School, Victoria, B.C., 1923.
Williams Lake Clay No. 1.—Appearance of true kaolin. Very promising as a suitable clay for
the manufacture of white-ware goods, but owing to its lack of plasticity and the high temperature
at which it fires, it is not suitable for school or ordinary studio work. It burned up to a porous
white body at 1,800° F.
Quesnel (Big Moose Group).—More plastic than Williams Lake. clay. Burns to a harder body
at low temperatures and colour not a pure white.
Clayburn (Ground Shale).—Short-grained. Only suitable for tiles. At Cone 06 the colour was
a deep cream.    The glaze crazed and salts were deposited on surface.
Port Haney (Maple Ridge).—Plastic and very close-grained. Difficult to dry. Range of fire
short.    Colour of fired ware, red.
Victoria No. 1.—Checked on drying and overtired very easily.
Victoria No. g.—Sample not used.
Victoria No. 3.—The best sample of Victoria clay. Burns to a good red colour and takes a good
glaze. The shrinkage was low. The chief difficulty with this clay is to dry the ware. The checking
could be overcome by the addition of powdered flint.
Sidney Island Nos. 1, 2, and 3.—The shrinkage of these clays was high and the range of firing
Clayoquot.—Ordinary brick-clay with a tendency to overfire at 1,800° F.
Vernon Nos. 1 and 2.—Clays of poor quality.    Shrinkage very high. R 14 British Columbia. 1924
Eight test-pieces fired and glazed at Cone 06 (1,800° F.) are being forwarded under separate
cover. The red-burning clays are all brick-clays and not sufficiently high grade to encourage their
use as a pottery body. The writer has tested clays from Terrace and Lakelse, B.C., which have better
drying qualities and a longer range of firing. As a general rule a stoneware-clay is the best for
school or studio work. Victoria No. 3, with the proper screening and ageing, would prove the most
suitable for school-work of the clays tested.
Clay-work for Schools.
Clay.—The best clay for school-work is of the stoneware type. It is highly plastic, clean, burns
to a hard body of cream colour, and has a wide range of firing. Unfortunately, the only known
deposits of this clay occur in Saskatchewan and Nova Scotia. However, where stoneware-clays are
not available, a plastic brick-clay having good drying qualities and taking a suitable glaze may be
utilized.    Very good clays of this type occur at Lakelse and Terrace, B.C.
These clays work well either on the wheel or for casting and their shrinkage is low. They burn
to a dense red body at about 1,800° F. Beautiful glaze effects are possible with these clays with
the use of coloured enamels. A suitable glaze firing at 1,900° F. of blue colour has the following
composition :—
White lead        155 gms.
Whiting ,       15     „
Feldspar       97     „
China-clay          2     ,,
Flint    -.       30     „
Tin  oxide         74     „
Cobalt oxide   (black)         5     ,,
Of the clays used at the Summer School, Victoria, a clay labelled " Victoria No. 3 " proved to
be the most suitable. It is, however, difficult to dry the ware and a more suitable clay should be used.
Preparation of the Clay.—The slips and clays should be prepared at least two weeks before being
used. This ageing of the clay improves its working quality and drying. The clay should be mixed
with an excess of water and run through a 60-mesh sieve. It is then known as a slip. The slip is
allowed to stand for a day or two; then the excess water is siphoned off. Part of the slip may be
set aside to be used for casting, while the remainder is poured into flat or plaster-of-Paris dishes and
allowed to dry until it is of proper consistency for building or wheel work. The clay is then rolled
into loaves about 10 by 5 inches, a wet cloth wrapped around it, and packed into crocks or zinc-lined
Vancouver Island and the Lower Mainland of British Columbia offers wonderful opportunities to the seed-grower. No finer seeds are produced anywhere. Climatic conditions appear
ideal for engaging in this industry.
A commencement has been made in this industry on Vancouver Island, where approximately
50 acres is now devoted to seed production. There is a big export demand and a good market
for the product of this line of industry.
In addition to seed production, the growing of bulbs would appear to afford an attractive
inducement to farmers in the recently reclaimed Sumas area. The various Government experimental farms are cognizant of the immense possibilities in this industry, and are annually
conducting a series of experiments of considerable interest to the agricultural community. The
general public are not sufficiently informed of the work being done, nor taking advantage of the
information furnished.
With a view to calling attention to the possibilities of this industry, the Department is
publishing herewith a report by the Sidney Experimenal Farm on " Sweet-pea Seed Production."
There is no reason why Vancouver Island and the Mainland of British Columbia should not be
a considerable factor in the production of flower and vegetable seeds and bulbs. The pioneering
work being done to establish this industry should prove an incentive to others.
By E. M. Straight, Superintendent, Experimental Farm.
Vancouver Island offers wonderful opportunities to the seed-grower. No finer seeds are produced
anywhere. Their colour, size, and freedom from disease all tell the same story. It is a noteworthy
fact that seeds grown here, when planted beside seeds obtained from other sources, germinate better,
look more thrifty, and maintain their lead.
From very small beginnings the sweet-pea industry has reached dimensions of some magnitude
and is more than doubling each year. It is estimated that 50 acres are given to the industry on Vancouver Island at present. It is true that the Island grower uses much hand-labour in planting, caring
for, harvesting, and cleaning his seed, but the product so far excels that it commands a better price.
Whether the greater care will ultimately safeguard the Canadian grower from his California competitor, who can and does offer seed at a much lower price, remains to be seen. The greater part of
the sweet peas go to England.    The demand is limited almost entirely to the Spencer varieties, while 14 Geo. 5 Department of Industries. R 15
the price paid is about $2 per pound. It is true that the Spencer does not produce the same quantity
of seed per acre as does the Grandiflora, yet respectable yields are possible in either case. At the
Experimental Station we have obtained with Grandifioras over 700 lb. per acre, and on land of only
fair quality. Such yields are not common, however, for 350 lb. to the acre is considered a good crop
by most growers under ordinary field conditions.
The methods employed by the sweet-pea men vary much. In a few cases the seed is planted
in the autumn, but for the most part this plan has been abandoned. Perhaps the most common method
is to plant in flats filled with very light soil or sand in early spring and to transplant to the open
ground as early as the land can be worked. This transplanting means much extra work, but the
operator considers himself well paid if by it he is able to hasten maturity. If the peas go into the
wet season before maturing, the crop is lost. The plants are spaced 4, 6, 9, and 12 feet apart.
Cultivation begins at once. Some growers " stick" their vines, while others think it worse than
useless. In this much depends upon the size of the vine. Where many sorts are grown, if the vines
are heavy it becomes almost necessary to stick in order to keep varieties separate. Otherwise it
is not to be advised. The pods are hand-picked and .placed in bags. Each bag is labelled, while the
threshing is done by pounding the bag with a stick. The pods are not moved from the bag from
the time they are placed there until after the threshing is done. After cleaning the peas are ready
for market.
The Experimental Station, Sidney, B.C., in order to solve some of the problems connected with
the industry, is carrying on a number of definite cultural projects with sweet peas, as follows: (1)
Sticking vs. no sticking; (2) lime vs.. no lime; (3) hilling vs. no hilling; (4) culture vs. no culture;
(5)   acid vs. no acid.    A complete summary of this work will be found in next year's report.
Water in late season is the great drawback to the seed-grower. Sweet peas love water and must
have it if the bloom is to be at its best, but the seed-grower wants seed. He will not get much of it,
however, if the peas keep on producing flowers. An illustration of this was amply brought out this
year. Two old cedar drains run at right angles through our sweet-pea plantation. Over these the
peas remain green and keep on flowering, but the ripe pods are lacking. On either side the crop is
normal, pods being filled with well-ripened seed.
We believe that the industry, in the hands of competent men, is capable of great expansion, but
the would-be grower must first understand the business and should obtain his contracts before growing
the seed.
What it Costs to produce Sweet Peas.
It costs 45 cents to produce a pound of sweet-pea seed, according to a report of the Sidney
Experimental Station of an experiment on 1 acre of land, the calculation of cost of production including labour at 30 cents an hour. The total cost of production was $333 and the yield was 748 lb.
Points disclosed in the experiment were as follows:—
Acid versus no acid showed that unsoaked seeds germinated forty-six out of fifty. The lowest
germination resulted in seeds soaked in sulphuric acid for eighteen minutes.
In the test for culture versus no culture, those treated with culture produced 774 lb. 12 oz. per
acre, as against 606 lb. untreated.
Ground limed at the rate of 1 ton to the acre produced 810 lb. 12 oz. per acre, as against 606
lb. on unlimed soil.
Rows planted 4 feet apart produced 829 lb. per acre, as against 701 lb. in rows 8 feet apart and
606 lb. in rows 12 feet apart.
A finer sample of seed and more of them are produced by sticking, as 889 lb. per acre were
produced in rows that were sticked, as against 606 lb. where there was no sticking.
It apparently does not pay to hill the rows, as hilling produced 606 lb. per acre, as against 810
lb. where no hilling was done.
It takes longer and is more expensive to hand-pick than reap and thresh. One plot hand-picked
produced 44 lb. in forty hours, while plot No. 2, reaped and threshed, took ten hours and produced
48 lb., the plots being the same in size, but the thresher recovering more of the seeds.
Flower-seed Production on Vancouver Island.
A survey of the flower-seed areas on Vancouver Island has brought out some facts that must
be seriously considered if British Columbia is to secure a larger store of British seed-house contracts.
There are a few growers that realize the importance of studying the flower-seed industry from
the standpoint of future trade rather than immediate gains. Unless this becomes more universal
among the growers, British Columbia will rapidly lose even its present flower-seed production trade.
Rogues.—A survey of the sweet-pea and other seed-producing areas suggest that few growers
realize the importance of pulling out the " rogues." Perhaps more attention has been paid in regard
to roguing to colour than roguing to type. Both are equal in importance. The blooms of many
varieties of sweet peas sun-scald very early, making it impossible to rogue for colour after they have
been in bloom for very long. Roguing must commence at the beginning of the bloom period and be
combined throughout the bloom period.
Labelling.—The manner in which many of the varieties of sweet peas were labelled allows too
great an opportunity for mixing varieties. Each row should be clearly labelled at both ends and a
plan of planting scheme kept on file. Picking-bags should have a label sewed on the outside and
Intertwining of Rows.—When different varieties are grown side by side every precaution must
be taken to prevent intertwining. Once intertwined it is too easy for a break to occur when separated,
leaving pods of one variety mixed with the other.    Too much carelessness was found in this matter. R 16 British Columbia. 1924
Threshing and Cleaning Devices.—The methods and equipment adopted on threshing and cleaning
should not leave any chance for mixing. There was evidence in many cases that mixing occurred
after harvesting.
Sweet-pea Seed Production, Sidney Experimental Station.
(1.)   Cost of Production (1 Acre)—
Rent   $ 30 00
Ploughing, 3 times  20 50
Seed, 10% lb. at $2  .'.  21 50
Seeding, 78% hours at 30 cents  23 50
Cultivating, 71 hours at 30 cents   21 30
Weeding, roguing, 65 hours at 30 cents   19 50
Manure    4 00
Harvesting, 536 hours at 30 cents   160 80
Threshing, cleaning, 114 hours at 30 cents   34 20
Total cost   $335 30
Yield per acre, 748 lb.; cost of producing 1 lb., 45 cents.
(2.) Acid vs. No Acid.— (Fifty seeds soaked in each case. Variety used, Clara Butt.) Soaked
in sulphuric acid 25 minutes, 36 germinated; soaked in sulphuric acid 18 minutes, 31 germinated;
soaked in sulphuric acid 10 minutes, 36 germinated ; unsoaked, 46 germinated.
Note.—Use of acid hastened germination to the extent of 24 hours, but all advantage was lost
at end of one week.
(3.) Culture vs. No Culture.—Treated with culture, 774 lb. 12 oz. per acre; untreated, 606 lb.
per acre.
(4.) Lime vs. No. Lime.— (Lime applied at the rate of 1 ton per acre.) Limed, 810 lb. 12 oz.
per acre; unlimed, 606 lb. per acre.
(5.) Distance, apart in Rows.—4 inches apart, 829 lb. per acre; 8 inches apart, 701 lb. per acre;
12 inches apart, 606 lb. per acre.
(6.)  Sticking vs. No Sticking.—Sticking, 889 lb. per acre; no sticking, 606 lb. per acre.
Note.—A finer sample of seed was produced by sticking.
(7.)  Hilling vs. No Hilling.—Hilling, 606 lb. per acre; no hilling, 810 lb. per acre.
(8.)  Harvesting.—Plot 1, hand-picking, 44 lb. in 40 hours; Plot 2, reaping, 48 lb. in 10 hours.
Note.—Plots of same size in each instance.
From time to time the Department of Industries has published data relative to the possibility
of commencing certain industries in the Province of British Columbia. Considerable information
has been collected by the Department in respect to these industries and is available to those
interested. In this report a brief mention will be made of a few capable of immediate results
with limited capital.
(a.)  Glass-bottle Industry.
Western Canada is dependent on a plant at Redcliff. Alberta, for its supply of bottles for
various beverages manufactured in the Province. Fruit, milk, and general flmt-glass bottles
are supplied from Montreal and Hamilton. The transportation of this commodity involves high
freights and breakages and is a constant handicap to every industry in the Province employing
glass containers.
The lack of a glass-works in British Columbia retards development in the pickle, fruit-
preserving, wine, and beverage industry and forms a tax on all householders utilizing glass
milk and fruit containers.
Various interests, when approached on the possibilities of a glass plant, point to the present
lack of a reported silica or sand deposit for a local manufacturer. Several deposits have been
tried out and are found to produce a satisfactory blue or brown bottle. Pioneering attempts
have been made in the past to establish the industry, both in Victoria and New Westminster.
The question of a local proven deposit, however, should not be a handicap. On the Pacific Coast
plants are already established at Anacortes, Washington, and at San Francisco. These plants
are dependent for their sand on Monterey, California, and Ottawa, Illinois. The plant at Red-
cliff, Alberta, also obtains its supply at Ottawa, Illinois. The plant at Hamilton is also furnished
from the same source and occasional importations from Belgium. The new Ford Glass-works
at Detroit is dependent on Belgium and Ottawa, Illinois, for source of supply; in fact, outside
of Belgium, the majority of glass-works bring their sand a considerable distance to the factory. 14 Geo. 5
Department op Industries.
R 17
In respect to this industry, the new situation developing on the Pacific Coast would make
it possible to bring in as ballast glass-sands in grain-ships, now coming in large numbers on the
British Columbia grain route. This I have no doubt would produce a cheaper transportation
of sand than many plants operating in Eastern Canada and the States.
Soda-ash, limestone, and cullet, used in this industry in addition to sand-, could all be
obtained locally, and British Columbia is capable of furnishing a demand for a one-unit glass
plant. Its establishment would furnish a big incentive to the berry industry, fruit-canning,
pickle industry, wine, and breweries. The present outlook for disposal of the product of a
glass-works is much improved over that of even a few years ago.
(o.)  Copra Oil-crushing Plant.
Periodically the attention of the public is called to the possibility of building up a reciprocal
trade with the Fiji Islands and other South Sea British possessions.
The chief item of export in these colonies is copra. This is the kernel of the cocoanut and
is the commercial name applied to the dried and broken kernel of the cocoanut after it is split
and prepared for shipment.   It is exceedingly rich in oil, averaging 65 to 70 per cent, of its bulk.
During the war Australia built up a huge trade in this material and established oil- and
copra-crushing plants at Sydney. These plants furnished oil to local soap-works and also exported
extensively to subsidiary soap companies in Great Britain. The value of export in copra and
oil through the Port of Sydney exceeded £700,000 in value. This sets up a return trade with
these islands to the Port of Sydney. The same benefit is derived by the Port of San Francisco.
Oil-crushing plants are established in San Francisco. They take care of a portion of the
demand of the United States for cocoanut-oil and by-products.
The plant to carry on this work is not at all expensive, and a development of this industry
would result in the sale of British Columbia canned salmon, fruit, lumber, canned meats, flour,
biscuits, and other commodities in these islands. During twelve months of last year the importations in cocoanut-oil, oilcake, lard compounds, grease, and peanut and soya-bean oil into Canada
Cocoanut-palm aud palm-kernel oil, not edible, peanut and soya-bean oil for manufacture
of soap—
Gals. Value.
From United Kingdom                36,552 $    32,285
From United States            1,383,563 1,110,023
From   other   countries               170,839 91,942
Totals    1,590,954 $1,234,250
Cocoanut-oil, n.o.p.—
From United Kingdom  30,483 $    34,570
From United States   32,746 37,608
From other countries   —.. 	
Totals   03,229 $     72,178
Oilcake and meal— Cwt.
From United Kingdom   304 $         510
From United States   33,232 73,621
From other countries  1,022 2,069
Totals   :  34,558 $     76,200
Lard  compound  and  similar  substances,   cottolene
and animal stearine of all kinds, n.o.p.— jj->.
From United Kingdom   48,868               $      6,151
From  United  States   1,170,464                    122,292
From other countries     	
Totals   1,219,332 $   128,443 R 18 British Columbia. 1924
Peanut and soya-bean oil, n.o.p.— Qais Value.
From United Kingdom   612 $ 641
From United States   50.574 41,472
From other countries   92,813 90,984
Totals    143,999 $   133,097
Peanut-oil, crude, for refining— jjD
From United Kingdom   187,108 $     20,308
From United States   12,130,837 1,173,937
From other countries  8,036,766 735,663
Totals.          20,354,711 $1,929,908
Grease,   rough,  the  refuse  of  animal  fat  for  the
manufacture of soap and oils only— Lb.
From United Kingdom   59,945               $      2,078
From United States  11,443,932                    903,399
From other countries   15,814                          910
Totals           11,519,691 $  906,387
The above figures indicate a very large market for this commodity in the Dominion. The
products derived from copra are cocoanut-oil, stearine-oil, oilcake, meal, fertilizer, and coir rope
from the husks of the cocoanut. The requirements of Canada could readily and easily be supplied
by a crushing and refining plant located in the Province of British Columbia. This would shut
out indirect importations now coming from British possessions through the United States and
give a big increase in reciprocal trade to British Columbia ports.
(c.)  Electrical Equipment and Appliances.
The Province of British Columbia at present produces a large proportion of the copper of
the British Empire. The Consolidated Mining and Smelting Company of Canada produces
refined copper at Trail. Blister-copper is produced at Anyox and copper concentrates at
The Dominion Government placed a bounty on the manufacture of copper rods. This is
an incentive to the rod-mill at Trail to turn out this product.
Eastern Canadian plauts manufacturing electrical equipment quite often utilize British
Columbia copper obtained in a roundabout way after it has been treated and refined in American
plants. They also utilize British Columbia lead and zinc, produced in a refined state at Trail.
In the manufacture of electric wire and cable huge quantities of these materials are transported
to Eastern Canada. Handling charges and transportation greatly increase the cost, especially
in Western Canada, when the finished product returns for resale.
The development in the use of electrical equipment in Asiatic countries and South American
Republics bordering on the Pacific would make this a large future field for electrical development. This could be more readily looked after by a plant operating in the ideal manufacturing
climate existing in this Province, taking advantage of the strategic location in respect to raw
materials, such as copper, lead, zinc, aud mica. Mica is found in British Columbia north of
Revelstoke and at Mount Selwyn. Extensive kaolin-deposits suitable for manufacturing electric
porcelain exist, and the proximity to rubber, the market of the East, would be to the advantage
of a local industry. At present a large percentage of Canadian rubber importations come through
Pacific Coast ports. In addition to this, British Columbia already manufactures the necessary
paper required iu insulation; in fact, all the requirements of this industry are at present
developed in their raw state in the Province of British Columbia, with the exception of the
steel plates, forming the cross and core of transformers and motors. These steel plates in the
Eastern Canadian plants are obtained from Great Britain, and in this respect British Columbia
is situated in equal favour. 14 Geo. 5
Department of Industries.
R 19
A company undertaking the manufacture of copper wire, underground cable, motors, transformers, and other electrical equipment in the Province could obtain suitable land for development; concessions in respect to taxes; could effect a great saving in British Columbia through
less heating costs; better labour conditions for employees through people preferring the equitable
climate of British Columbia. This equitable climate makes for a greater labour efficiency, in
that the heat of summer and the cold of winter does not interfere with the many hand operations
required in this industry.
(d.)  Sugar and Sugar-beet Production in British Columbia.
On a number of occasions proposals to establish the beet-sugar industry in British Columbia
have been placed before the Department of Agriculture and more recently before the Department of Industries.
The efforts of promoters of these industries have been based upon the suitability of the
climate of British Columbia for sugar-beet production. The success at experimental farms
over a period of years in growing sugar-beets containing a high sugar content, the general
demand for the commodity produced, and the boon such an industry would be to other branches
of farming, particularly dairying and hog-raising.
The files of the Department of Agriculture at Victoria and the Department of Industries
contain data which we consider of sufficient interest to publish to assist persons interested in
developing this industry.
During the recent election campaign in Great Britain a considerable point was made of
the fact that the Government under Premier Baldwin expected to establish the sugar industry
on a large scale in Great Britain. Owing to a remission of the excise duties proposed it was
stated that they expected to be able to establish the sugar industry in the country. At that
time it was reported that there were 15,000 acres in England under sugar-beet cultivation and
that there was no reason why there should not be 500,000 acres. Factories established at Cautley,
Norfolk, proved to be such a success that, another was contemplated at Southwold, Suffolk. The
establishment of a new plant at Southwold Harbour was based upon a profit of £104,000 made
by the Cantley Company, and the fact that reports were to the effect that an excellent return
had been made to the grower of beets containing a high percentage of sugar.
In Canada there are three sugar-beet factories—Lethbridge, Alberta, served by irrigated
land, and at Chatham and Wallaceburg, Ontario. During 1922 only two factories were in
operation, those at Chatham and Wallaceburg. The total value of beet-root sugar produced
was estimated to be $1,645,885, representing an average wholesale price of 5% cents per pound.
For 1921 the corresponding values were $3,554,203 for total value and 6.7 cents per pound.
The area, yield, and value of sugar-beets in Canada and production of refined beet-root
sugar  for  1911-1922  were  as  follows:—
per Acre.
per Ton.
Production of
Refined Beetroot Sugar.
$ 6 59
5 00
6 12
6 00
5 50
6 20
6 75
12  71
14 61
15 47
9 90
7 56
1915 .           	
The manufacture of sugar from sugar-beets began in Germany in 1833. Since that time
it has spread over the whole of Kurope, Germany alone having 500 factories, while Austria and
France had prior to the war about 300 each. The activity of various agricultural communities
and small villages in these couutries is centred around these sugar industries. R 20 British Columbia. 1924
The industry has been adopted in other parts of the world, the United States having a
large number of factories, also Australia and New Zealand. All persons familiar with various
phases of the sugar-beet industry readily admit that farmers operating in prosperous sugar-beet
districts are very favourably situated. The mistake is quite often placed on the nature of the
industry rather than the suitability of the district to raise the proper grade of beet with a
high sugar content. Tests to date show that the Pemberton Meadow District grows sugar-beets
with a sugar content of over 20 per cent., second only to the possibilities of some sections of
Prince Edward Island. Tests undertaken at Agassiz, B.C., show from 17.5 to 18.7 per cent,
sugar content. Tests at Invermere show a sugar content of 17.9 per cent.; at Sidney, on Vancouver Island, a sugar content of 19.1 to 19.3 per cent.
From these results it would seem that suitable land can be obtained for this industry. The
next question that enters, in so far as the land is concerned, is quantity required. An industry
of this nature requires an area of from 5,000 to 6,000 acres production per annum. A successful
development requires a crop-rotation of from three to four years, so that a community would
require a suitable sugar-beet producing area of from 20,000 to 24,000 acres, located within a
convenient radius of the factory.
The chief benefit to a community of the sugar-beet industry, apart from the actual production of sugar, is the use made of the various by-products. The sugar-beet industry is said to
increase the stock-carrying capacity of the land 100 per cent, and makes stock-raising interdependent on the industry. The tops of the sugar-beet are extensively used to fatten cattle,
and as a dairy food they are valued at $7.50 a ton. The wet beet-pulp is sold back to the
farmers after extraction of the sugar at 80 cents a ton and forms the basis of a good hog or
cattle food. The dry pulp is worth considerably more. The industry also furnishes large
quantities of molasses. The increase in the stock-carrying capacity of the land furnishes the
supply of fertilizer necessary to replenish the soil to carry on the rotation necessary in beet
The estimate of the cost of sugar-beet production in Germany is $32 an acre. This calculation takes into account cheap labour in thinning, hoeing, and harvesting. In the United States
Mexican and Negro labour is largely used. In France, Belgium, and Holland the work is done
by women and children in the community in which the plant is located. The results obtained
at Lethbridge, Alberta, and several of the Western States for the past few years show an average
return of $9 per ton for beets, or a return per acre of $100.98. In these districts the cost of production is $64.38, leaving a net profit of $36.00. This is based on a yield of 11.22 tons per acre. Conditions in British Columbia would approximate this, except at the present time the price paid
per ton would show a decrease as a result of the general reduction in the price of sugar.
In addition to the advantage derived from the use of by-products in the dairy industry,
beet-crop leaves the soil in excellent condition for succeeding crops. From the above it will be
seen that to derive the full advantage in the location of a sugar-beet industry would require
its establishment in a district making a success of dairying.
The question of labour, in addition to the dairying industry, would require its location close
to a large centre. The number of man-hours of labour required to produce an acre of sugar-
beets emphasizes the importance of the labour problem in beet-raising. The question that arises
is, can the necessary labour be secured? Thinning, hoeing, and harvesting is a laborious occupation. Thinning requires 32.1 hours per acre, or three men slightly over one day to thin an
acre, or three men to thin 10 acres in eleven days. This would be the length of time in which
thinning should be completed. An expert thinner under favourable conditions can average half
an acre or more per day, and a boy or girl of approximately 14 years of age will usually thin
more than a man. At the rate allowed in the calculation of costs, this would provide for pay
of $3 per day. It forms a healthy and profitable occupation to young people in the communities
in which the industry is established. The harvesting requires 58.3 hours of man-labour per
acre. ' This includes ploughing out, pulling, topping, and hauling. The harvesting season extends
over a period of one month, and taking the twenty working-days available, for this it would
require three men working ten hours a day to harvest 10 acres. In Eastern Canada well-experienced labourers in the sugar-beet industry have from time to time been induced to emigrate
from European countries. An industry in British Columbia would afford equal inducements for
obtaining labour in this way. 14 Geo. 5 Department of Industries. R 21
How Sugar-beets are grown.
The procedure in growing sugar-beets is somewhat different from that of the usual crops.
In Europe, where the sugar-beet industry is cited as yielding large returns, the following cultural methods have been adopted:—
From ten to twelve loads of barnyard manure are applied and ploughed ip during the
autumn. The ploughing consists in turning up the surface soil to a depth of 8 inches and sub-
soiling to a depth of 4 inches, thus furnishing a root-bed at least 12 inches in depth. This is
necessary to ensure the production of roots of the proper shape. . The beet-root should grow like
a well-shaped parsnip.
About 10 to 20 lb. of seed is then drilled in on the flat in rows about 18 inches apart, the
seed being buried to a depth of about % inch. It is essential that the seed be of a good strain,
producing beets with high sugar content. Seed of the best strains is scarce outside of Germany,
where by careful selection the best strains have been developed and the best seed produced.
In cultivating the beets the soil must be drawn toward the beets instead of away from
them, to avoid uncovering the crowns of the beets. Additional care must be exercised in hoeing.
The thinning must be done by hand in order that only one plant be left in a place. Where two
beets are allowed to grow together twisted roots are sure to result, thus lowering the quality
and the selling-price of the crop.
Areas Available in British Columbia.
The best opportunity for the successful launching of the sugar-beet industry in the Province
of British Columbia would appear to be the dyked and reclaimed areas of Sumas Lake. This
district, even prior to the recent large reclamation-work, was well advanced in the dairy industry. Situated as it is near the Cities of Vancouver, Westminster, and Chilliwack, labour
difficulties would be met.
The alluvial soil forming this old Sumas Lake body would appear to be ideal for this purpose. Sufficient land could be obtained for the successful carrying-on of this industry. This
land, being all cleared and ready for planting, would not involve the same large initial outlay
as other sections.
The tests undertaken by the experimental farms would indicate that the Pemberton Meadows
District, sections of the Cariboo, the Windermere Valley, Stuart Lake District, and Saanich
Peninsula, on Vancouver Island, would, iu so far as climatic and soil conditions, be ideal.
Apart from the Saanich Peninsula, however, the present development of the associated
requirements in agriculture would make it necessary for any company undertaking the development of a sugar-beet industry to also undertake a settlement and general farming scheme. As
a means of settling Sumas area and developing this rich portion of the Province, the sugar-
beet industry possesses many attractive features that should appeal to capitalists interested in
this industry.    .
To balance at credit of fund, January 1st, 1923   $ 45,426 97
Refunds of loans and interest        75,560 54
$120,987 51
By Disbursements on account of loans granted   $ 60,765 53
Balance at credit of fund, December 31st, 1923       60,221 98
$120,987 51
Printed by Charles F. Banfield, Printer to the King's Most Excellent Majesty.


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