Business, Finance & Economics

Canada's pork surplus

Canada's hog industry is in crisis; there are simply too many animals on the market so hog farmers either have to brave the crisis or slaughter their hogs. At this farm, this farmer is weighing his options. His family has raised hogs for six generations, and as the President of the Canadian Pork Council, he worries for other farmers and so he supports a new government which pays farmers to cull their herds; for each animal they slaughter they receive $225 dollars. The goal is to reduce the number of breeding hogs in Canada by 10%. The farmer says that will also mean fewer hog farmers in Canada. There are a number of reasons for the trouble: vaccines have increased the health of the country's hog herd, another is the strong Canadian dollar which makes American hogs cheaper. Analysts say Canada's hog producers are in for a few years of tough times, but they think the industry will emerge from the crisis stronger. This economist says one positive outcome of this crisis is that it's making Western countries think about food production and its effects, and this used to be back page news. The hogs slaughtered in Canada won't do anything to alleviate food crises globally, but much of the slaughtered pork will go to help the hungry in Canada providing food for Canadians in need.

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