Free Up of CRP Acres for Feed Grain Production Urged

US - The National Pork Producers Council is encouraging the US government to consider freeing up Conservation Reserve Programme acres for planting feed grains this spring to help ease an anticipated shortage, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 23 March 2011
clock icon 3 minute read

Last week, following their biannual meeting in Merida, Mexico, the presidents of Canadian Pork Council, the National Pork Producers Council and the Mexican Pork Federation issued a joint statement calling on the three NAFTA nations to prioritize grains for human and animal consumption.

NPPC president Doug Wolf notes every time the USDA has released a report anticipated carry-over stocks have been adjusted downward with the latest report, issued a couple of weeks ago, projecting ending stocks at about a five per cent or about 19 days off supply left in the pipeline.

Doug Wolf-National Pork Producers Council

After discussing that our come up, what's going to happen in the event that we have a late harvest or we have any kind of a weather condition?

From a welfare perspective we've got to make sure that we can take care of these animals and assure that there's an available feed supply out there.

What we're looking at now is we're trying to look at all available options out there.

One that the US has presented to our secretary of agriculture is the possibility of opening up some non-sensitive CRP acres.

Believe me there's not a lot of those but there are some available to just try and bring some acres into production.

The bad thing is we've got a world-wide situation where we're just short in all feed grains in production across the world so there's a huge competition for acres going to happen this spring in the US.

Sadly is there's just not enough acres to go around and somebody is going to come up short.

Mr Wolf says, in the long term, if there's no feed, there will have to be a cutback in animal production and that's going to transfer into higher protein prices for the consumer but, in the short term, producers are just looking for a physical availability of grain to ensure the animals are taken care of.

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