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Re-Opening of Moose Jaw Gets Positive Response

by 5m Editor
19 October 2010, at 11:24am

CANADA - Officials with Donald's Fine Foods report the response among Saskatchewan swine industry stakeholders to its planned re-opening of an idled Moose Jaw pork processing plant has been extremely positive, writes Bruce Cochrane.

In May Langley, B.C. based Donald's Fine Foods completed the purchase of the former Moose Jaw Packers pork processing plant, which had been sitting idle since September 2006, and is now completing the renovations necessary to secure Canadian Food Inspection Agency certification and hiring the workers that will operate the plant.

Donald's Fine Foods Senior vice-president Tony Martinez says work is progressing on schedule for a late December opening and he anticipates it will take about six months to bring the plant up to full capacity.

Tony Martinez-Donald's Fine Foods

You start with your Canadian Food Inspection Agency or your CFIA and that determines what it's going to take to get you re-certified and HACCP certified.

Then there was also some other issues, re-doing all of the plumbing and most of the electrical and just some re-design that we're doing to the facility.

In terms of timing we're on track.

We've set an aggressive date of trying to kill some hogs before the year is out and we're still sticking to it.

We see producing about one thousand to 12 hundred head per day out of that facility.

In terms of the overall mix I think you're going to see no different than our current company structure, it's just an add on of our business.

It's probably 51 per cent export and 49 per cent domestic in terms of tonnage and it's about a 60-40 split in terms of domestic versus export when you look at revenue.

Mr Martinez says the response among Saskatchewan pork industry stakeholders has been positive so far.

He notes Saskatchewan producers are incurring additional freight costs transporting hogs to either Brandon or Red Deer and hopefully that won't be the case when shipping to Moose Jaw.

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