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Why was flour of poor quality? The impact of seigneurial laws and price controls on flour in Quebec during the colonial era

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The literature on Quebec's economic history often portrays its agriculture during the pre-Confederation era as poor. One recurrent problem mentioned in the literature is that the flour produced in the colony was of very poor quality. This judgment was only extended towards flour consumed within the colony and not that exported to foreign markets (where Canadian flour seems to have enjoyed a slightly better reputation even if exports were quite small in terms of volume). This paper tackles the sources of this problem of quality on the domestic market and argues that it arose from a combination of land tenure regulations under the system of seigneurial tenure and of price regulations.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2016

More about this publication?
  • Agricultural History Review is the leading journal for the publication of original research in all aspects of agricultural and rural history. First published in 1953, the Review reflects the diversity of approaches which are possible in rural history. Its editors welcome submissions in any aspect of the history of agriculture, rural society and rural economy over the past millennium. Whilst it is not concerned with current policy debates, it is interested in considering discussions of the historical dimensions of current problems in rural society and food supply. The Review is especially strong in British rural history, but actively seeks submissions in European and American rural history and has no bar on submissions concerning the remainder of the world. It is also the journal of record for book reviews in the discipline.

    Agricultural History Review has an international editorial board. The current editors are Professor P. S. Warde, University of Cambridge, UK, who is responsible for articles, and Dr J. E. Morgan, University of Bristol, UK, who serves as editor for book reviews. The Review is fully peer-refereed.

    Agricultural History Review is published by the British Agricultural History Society from whom personal subscriptions may be obtained.
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