Pork Producers Call for Emergency Meeting to Discuss Crisis

by 5m Editor
2 April 2013, at 9:41am

CANADA - An Argyle area pork producer is calling for an emergency meeting involving pork industry stakeholders and government to find long term solutions to the crisis facing their industry, writes Bruce Cochrane.

A resolution to be brought forward next week at Manitoba Pork Council's 2013 annual general meeting calls on the organization, and its counterparts from other provinces, to organize an emergency meeting involving Canadian producers, processors, retail and Government to find a long term solution to the crisis facing their industry.

Cal Penner, a district advisor with Manitoba Pork Council and an Argyle area producer says the industry has faced some serious challenges over the past five to six years.

Cal Penner-Manitoba Pork Council

First place, we've had an increase in the Canadian dollar.

The Canadian dollar above par has been a huge disadvantage especially going into the United States market.

We've had restricted access to the United States market because of Mandatory Country of Origin Labelling.

M-COOL has limited our marketing choices.

US packers don't want Canadian slaughter hogs.

Canadian weanlings going south, they've had discounts.

And the third challenge that we've had is the sharp increase in the cost of feed due to the ethanol policies and the drought that we had last year.

Feed costs have doubled since about 2006 and we're still receiving the same price for hogs that we were getting back at that time.

In the last year we've had losses on average of about 30 dollars per pig and many producers actually have quit and there's the possibility that more are going to quit in the year to come.

Mr Penner suggests, to restore profitability, the industry needs to figure out a way to return more value back to the producer from the pork value chain.