Mood of Pork Producers More Optimistic Heading into 2014

CANADA - The chair of Manitoba Pork Council says 2014 is shaping up to be a much better year for pork producers than 2013, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 2 January 2014
clock icon 3 minute read

As the result of disappointing grain production in 2012 due to drought pork producers saw grain prices double heading into 2013.

Manitoba Pork Council chair, Karl Kynoch, says, despite fairly strong hog prices over the past year, the high cost of feed created a real challenge, which forced many producers out of business.

Karl Kynoch - Manitoba Pork Council

2014 is looking like a fairly prosperous year for the hog industry right now and a lot of that goes back to 2013.

In 2013, we see some tremendous crops came off in Manitoba, right across Canada and in the US in the Corn Belt.

There was just some huge yields, a lot of record yields came off so that has really replenished the feed supply.

At the same time, our hog prices have remained fairly high and we're able to contract some fairly good hog prices for 2014.

With that reduction in feed costs, it's going to allow producers to get some bigger profit margins and start repaying back some of the losses that have occurred over the last number of years so it's really looking a lot more positive, a lot more optimism for the 2014 period.

That's mainly due to a larger supply of feed grains and decent hog futures.

There's some prices coming up in 2014 where you could probably lock a hog up around the 190-dollar in some of the higher months.

Currently, they're probably looking more at the break even right now and that's fairly good.

If you can get through November-December, which is normally the lowest time of the year to break even, and get into some profits early in the 2014 year and see some better profits through the summer, that's a real positive outlook going forward into the 2014 period so we're very optimistic that 2014 is going to help to replenish some of the losses that have occurred in the past three years.

Mr Kynoch acknowledges, considering the substantial losses incurred since 2011, it's going to take good prices for two or three years for producers to recover fully.

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