Normalized US-Canada Hog Trade Expected to Take a Year

CANADA - The chair of Sask Pork expects full normalization of trade in the wake of repeal of US Mandatory US Country of Origin Labelling to take about a year, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 15 January 2016
clock icon 3 minute read

In the wake of the US repeal of Mandatory Country of Origin Labelling provisions for pork and beef US processing plants that had shied away from Canadian born hogs to avoid the need for segregation are looking more favorably at Canadian animals.

Florian Possberg, the chair of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board, says up until the end of 2015 there was only 1 major US processor that was not discriminating against Canadian hogs.

Florian Possberg-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board:

Country of Origin Labelling was finally repealed around Christmas time and so it's taken a bit of time for the packers that were not buying Canadian born animals to re-tool their plants to accept Canadian animals hut we're seeing that happening.

Already there's a couple of the processors that weren't buying Canadian born hog now accepting Canadian hogs and some of the people that we supply our hogs to are getting calls from plants that weren't buying Canadian hogs before that are really but discriminating against our animals going forward.
But some of the processors deal with certain growers and those are longer term relationships.

It's going to take awhile for everything to normalize.

Even though packers want to buy Canadian hogs they're not necessarily available as freely as they would like so those relationships need to be reestablished.

Technically I think Country of Origin Labelling is gone.

Practically, we're probably looking for really a year for that to fully provide the benefit that a normalized trade relationship should see.

Possberg says the open border makes marketing options a lot more competitive for both Canadian producers and U.S. producers that source Canadian hogs.

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