Quick Response to Transition Plan Proposal Urged

CANADA - The Canadian Pork Council is appealing for a timely government response to it's proposed Strategic Transition Plan for the Canadian hog industry, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 15 July 2009
clock icon 3 minute read

The Canadian Pork Council has proposed a hog industry transition plan that calls for adjustments to the Advance Payments Program, including allowing a second draw, an H1N1 Recovery Loan Plan and a Hog Farm Transition Payment Program.

Following last week's annual agriculture ministers' meeting federal agriculture minister Gerry Ritz indicated the plan is being seriously consideration and he hopes to be in a position to make announcements within days.

Stephen Moffett, the national chair of the CPC's Business Risk Management Committee, says the industry has gone through a tremendously long down-cycle and it's getting harder for producers to hang on.

Stephen Moffett-Canadian Pork Council

We've been involved with this for some time now and, as you can appreciate, time is of the essence.

We started the official request back in May and obviously the situation is worse now because the H1N1 hit the media after that point and so, the longer time goes on, we're losing producers every week now.

We've got farm families that are losing their farms, losing their livelihoods every week and so time is of the essence.

With this program I think we feel that we really need to manage this transition.

We know that we have already lost a lot of producers and we know no matter what we do we're still going to lose some more of those producers but we're trying to manage that transition so that it doesn't adversely affect any one region too much, so it doesn't adversely affect some of the abattoirs and some of the other supply industry.

We don't want to just see our industry fall off a cliff.

We need to try and manage this crisis and I guess we're calling on the government to step up to the plate do their share.

Mr Moffett notes the federal agriculture minister has indicated he supports the plan and hopefully he'll be able to get support from his colleagues to do something.

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