Province to Take Over Regional Plant

CANADA - The owners of Prince Edward Island's hog processing plant announced they would be closing it down Thursday, but the province, a heavy creditor of the plant, is saying it will operate it under a receiver.
calendar icon 14 December 2007
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It is unclear where farmers still raising hogs will now send them for slaughter. (CBC)

Provincial Treasurer West Sheridan told CBC News that the province has no intention of operating the plant for very long. If a private company cannot be found to take it over, operations will be wound down.

The news has implications beyond P.E.I. Farmers from Nova Scotia and New Brunswick also use the plant, and several hundred hogs a week are shipped in for slaughter from Quebec.

Thursday's announcement follows years of financial difficulty, and what has been described as a crisis in the hog industry. Many producers have gone out of business in recent months, either by choice or forced out by debt.

Many were expecting an announcement of more government money for the plant, but instead it pulled the plug.

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