Saskatchewan Pork Producers Explore Expanded Marketing Options

CANADA - The Chair of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board reports the mood of the province's pork producers has changed from one of gloom and doom last fall to one of encouragement and even excitement now, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 6 June 2007
clock icon 3 minute read

With the completion, last week, by Maple Leaf Foods of the phase out of its Mitchell's Gourmet Foods pork processing plant, pigs that had been going to Saskatoon are now being diverted to plants in Manitoba, Alberta and the United States.

Sask Pork Chair Joe Kleinsasser, of Rosetown Colony, credits the SPI Marketing Group with doing an excellent job presenting a menu of options.

He notes, once his operation completes its contract with Maple Leaf, it will be sending pigs to the U.S.

Joe Kleinsasser-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board

Our pigs will be going through to California through Phoenix AgriTech.

It's a broker out of Manitoba.

They do pigs into Hormel which is Austin, Minnesota and ours will be going to California.

We used to think we had Brandon, we had Olymel and then we had John Morrell and that was about it but, as it turns out, there are more places to go.

Because of what's happening in the states, with Smithfield buying Premium Standard, some of the pigs who would have gone to California are now going to Smithfield plants so that has opened the California market for us.

It's funny how things happen.

This has only happened in the last half a year that Smithfield has acquired Premium Standard and that market in California has opened up.

We have only sent some test loads and they look really good.

We're very close to what we would have gotten at Maple Leaf and this is after freight so we're actually quite excited by it.

Kleinsasser says, for those who had always been tied at the umbilical cord to Mitchell's, it's a different kind of feeling knowing you can go out and look for new markets and they are there.

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