CANADA - Swine health will be a key topic discussed later this month as a trade advocacy delegation representing Manitoba Pork travels to the US Midwest, writes Bruce Cochrane.
Next week a delegation representing Manitoba Pork will be in Minneapolis to take part in the Minnesota Pork Congress, and in Des Moines the following week for the Iowa Pork Congress.
Manitoba Pork general manager, Andrew Dickson, says the events provide an opportunity to talk about issues of mutual concern with US producers and representatives of farm organizations and government.
Andrew Dickson - Manitoba Pork:
The Manitoba hog industry is integrally linked in with the production systems in Minnesota and Iowa.
About three million baby pigs pass through the Emerson port of entry into the US with about a third of those going to Minnesota and two thirds going into Iowa.
We have producers in Manitoba who finish their pigs out in the United States so there's issues that we have to talk about our transportation rules, need to talk about disease and the transfer of disease.
We're trying to keep the disease that they have in the United States out of the Canadian system, especially in Western Canada.
We have a limited number of ports of entry and we want to keep it that way but also we want to talk to the US about what actions they're taking to try to reduce some of these diseases that seem to pop up in their herds and we want to make sure that we're not bringing disease down into their systems as well.
We take pride in the fact that our genetic potential that we sell into the United States is relatively disease free in comparative terms and we want to keep it that way.
Mr Dickson notes Manitoba Pork has been involved in these trade advocacy missions for 10 years, and there is a much better understanding of Canadian pork production among American producers now than there was a decade ago.
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