Prairie Swine Centre Outlines Recommendations for Surviving Tough Economic Times

by 5m Editor
29 March 2004, at 12:00am

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 1477. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.

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Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork

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Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council
and Sask Pork.

Farm-Scape, Episode 1477

The Prairie Swine Centre is encouraging hog producers to consider strategies that will maximize returns per pig in order to weather the current difficult economic situation.

Strategies for 'surviving the though times' will be one of the topics examined during the focus on the future conference which begins tomorrow in Red Deer.

Prairie Swine Centre President Dr. John Patience says the pork industry has never seen such a sustained period of low prices and is probably going through the most difficult economic times in memory.

"Because of the very difficult financial circumstances, producers are looking at all ways of reducing their costs.

Obviously the logical thing to do is to find ways of doing the same thing with less money but the other thing we need to look at is to maximize our revenues.

For example, one of the things that we need to look at is minimizing our sort losses which can increase our revenue per pig by one, two or three dollars per pig depending on where the operation is at the present time.

It means looking at genetics, looking at nutrition, looking at all those factors that can influence carcass to make sure that we're maximizing not only the proportion of animals that fall in the core of the grid but also the premiums that the packers are paying for quality of product.

Looking back on our operation since November, they averaged almost five dollars per pig in premiums.

That's above the index so, looking at all of those opportunities in the market place to reduce costs but also looking at those opportunities to maximize revenues under a given set of economic circumstances."

Dr. Patience says producers, not only in western Canada but throughout North America, Europe and Southeast Asia have all be losing money the past couple of years.

He says it's only been in the last month to six weeks that we've seen prices climb above break even.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

5m Editor