US Pork Producers Concerned About Canadian Pork Industry Subsidies

by 5m Editor
12 June 2012, at 11:31am

US & CANADA - The president of the US based National Pork Producers Council says, despite concerns over subsidies offered to Canadian pork producers, relations among the US and Canadian pork industries remain positive, Bruce Cochrane writes.

Matters related to trade were discussed last week when representatives of Manitoba Pork Council and the National Pork Producers Council met during World Pork Expo in Des Moines.

NPPC president R.C. Hunt says producers in the United States have been concerned with provincial government subsidies that give a distinct advantage to producers in those areas and disadvantage US producers and the Canadian sow buy-out program which offered assistance to producers to vacate the industry.

R.C. Hunt-National Pork Producers Council

One of the things that probably concerned us in the US is the opportunity for recovery, that after a three year period of time, that someone could go back in and open and operate that facility.

We, right or wrong, looked at that particular program as a benefit subsidizing the Canadian producer.

If you asked us behind closed doors during that period of time, everybody was in negative margins and would I have liked to have something like that personally in my farm, absolutely yes.

But unfortunately the philosophy and position of the National Pork Producers is that we truly believe and we've been very consistent with this philosophy is that we just don't want government intervention.

We want everything based on the free market enterprise and we've been consistent with that philosophy for a long time.

Mr Hunt says, despite differing government philosophies on subsides, relations among pork producers on the two sides of the border remain strong.

He says there is agreement that the Canadian, US and even Mexican pork industries are part of the western hemisphere and they need to work together very aggressively because they'll be major suppliers of pork around the world.