CANADA - The chair of Sask Pork suggests re-assembling the support structure required to replace aging swine barns will be one of the main challenges facing the western Canadian pork industry moving forward, writes Bruce Cochrane.
In response to record profits over the last year and a half there has been some herd expansion in Saskatchewan as producers restocked idled facilities.
An industry panel will discuss pork industry challenges and opportunities tomorrow as part of Saskatchewan Pork Industry Symposium 2014 underway 18 and 19 November, 2014 in Saskatoon.
Saskatchewan Pork Development Board chair Florian Possberg says new construction in western Canada's pork industry has been minimal and, as facilities wear out, replacing them will present a challenge.
Florian Possberg-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board:
If we look back ten years ago when we had contractors that were in the business of building barns and we had supply businesses that supplied equipment and construction materials and those sorts of things, those things that supported building new barns and replacing existing barns, we haven't had that for such a period of time that if we are to get into expansion mode we really have to rebuild the whole support infrastructure to grow our industry.
For us to have a sustainable industry with enough production to maintain a value chain with slaughter plants and other industries that support our business, what does that look like?
Eventually our existing facilities will grow old and need to be replaced and how, as an industry, are we going to accomplish that.
Mr Possberg says if we are to have an expanding industry we have to be profitable and we have to rebuild the infrastructure that can re-grow our industry and that's going to be a challenge.
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