Ottawa Farmers Get $50-million for Culling Herds

by 5m Editor
15 April 2008, at 8:12am

CANADA - The federal government plans to pay pig producers up to $50-million in total to slaughter as many as 150,000 breeding pigs. The move is aimed at curbing the deepening crisis in Canda's pig industry.

Farmers will receive $225 for every hog they kill, so long as they agree to wipe out their entire breeding herd and stay out of the hog business for three years, says a report on business news site Globe Investor. The government hopes the program will reduce a glut on the market that has helped drive down prices.

“It's a pretty drastic step,” said Clare Schlegel, a hog farmer near Kitchener, Ont., who is also president of the Canadian Pork Council. The $225 price is roughly four times what a farmer would get for a culled hog on the market today, he added.

Mr. Schlegel said the massive cull, which is expected to reduce the nation's breeding herd by 10 per cent, is the only way to save thousands of hog farmers across Canada. “We're under a fair bit of economic stress and turmoil,” he said, adding that he is losing as much as $65 on each pig on his farm.

Rising feed prices and the stronger Canadian dollar have pummelled pork producers, pushing many out of business and leaving others struggling to get by.

View the Globe Investor story by clicking here.

5m Editor