CPC: Swine Producers Projected to Profit in 2009

by 5m Editor
8 January 2009, at 8:53am

CANADA - The Canadian Pork Council is confident 2009 will see a return to profitability in the Canadian hog industry but the current global economic situation could be a factor, writes Bruce Cochrane.

High input costs, low hog prices, the strong value of the Canadian dollar early in the year and the fallout from US Country of Origin Labelling made 2008 difficult for Canadian pork producers.

Canadian Pork Council President Jurgen Preugschas says, while exchange rates and input costs have fallen, the global financial meltdown makes predictions difficult.

Jurgen Preugschas-Canadian Pork Council

We are expecting a return to profitability for sure in the third and fourth quarters of this year but we're hopeful that it might even occur sooner.

When you look at the hog and pig numbers both in the US and in Canada and also around the world, the sow numbers have been reducing simply from the economic pressures on our producers.

In Canada of course we've had significant reductions in production and it's still taking place today as our producers are hurting.

To a lesser degree there's been some reduction in the United States and certainly in other parts of the world as well there's been significant reduction.

That has taken place and we are hopeful that that will translate into profitability in 2009.

But, of course, with the economic crisis all bets are off in terms of trying to predict where exactly we're going to end up at.

It becomes very very difficult with the volatile climate that we're in today.

Preugschas is convinced the Canadian pork industry has the right fundamentals for success.

He believes it's a matter of working together as a total supply chain and getting assistance from Canadian consumers in buying Canadian pork so those jobs don't disappear from Canada.