Producers fear Dollar rise will wipe out pork industry

by 5m Editor
12 November 2007, at 10:04am

STRATFORD - Pork producers are predicting the end of the industry in Ontario and the loss of 40,000 jobs in pork alone if costs and the soaring loonie stay at today's levels.

The mood was "very sombre" at a meeting in Mitchell when about 500 farmers and industry leaders met with MP Gary Schellenberger (PC -- Perth-Wellington), said Rob Nyenhuis, president of Perth County Pork Producers.

Nyenhuis said producers are seeking some "bridge funding" to help those determined to stay in business.

Producers now get only $85 to $90 a hog, when the production cost is $135, he said.

Schellenberger told producers at Thursday night's meeting that Prime Minister Stephen Harper can't do anything about interest rates, but Nyenhuis pointed out Ontario's Dalton McGuinty and other premiers have been calling on the federal government to do something.

Pork producers had been prepared to work with a loonie trading at 85 cents US, Nyenhuis said, but can't cope with the dollar at US$1.05.

Source: London Free Press

5m Editor