Expansion of Cull Breeding Swine Program Urged

by 5m Editor
4 September 2008, at 9:25am

CANADA - The Canadian Pork Council is urging the federal government to expand the Cull Breeding Swine program to included more slaughtered animals retroactively, writes Bruce Cochrane.

The federal Cull Breeding Swine program offered Canadian hog producers who agreed to depopulate breeding barns and leave them empty of breeding stock for a minimum of three years 225 dollars per animal culled.

The program, which targeted a ten percent reduction in sow numbers, provided an application window of April 14 to September 30, 2008 and included provisions for retroactive payments to producers who had culled animals after November 1, 2007.

CPC president Jurgen Preugschas says pork council is asking to have that retroactive date extended to August 1, 2007.

Jurgen Preugschas-Canadian Pork Council

The initial target was to target about 10 percent of the Canadian herd and that's about 150 thousand head of sows.

We haven't quite reached that.

We're very close to 120 thousand sows.

But what we did learn was that many producers had already culled a portion or all of their sows prior to the November 1 date.

Therefore we've requested of the agriculture minister if he could extend that date to August 1 to allow those producers who had already begun culling prior to be part of that program.

Preugschas says the initial response to the request from federal agriculture minister Gerry Ritz has been positive but the change still needs to be approved by cabinet.

He says, with applications to cull about 120 thousand head, the program came close to its 150 thousand head target.

However, he points out, in terms of influencing price, it's a little to early to tell because once a cull takes place it takes about a year to affect the market.

5m Editor