Saskatchewan Pork Industry Faces Range of Challenges

Farmscape for October 23, 2009   (Episode 3328)

The Saskatchewan Pork Development Board says its new board of directors will need to address a range of challenges.

Ballots are now in the hands of producers for the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board's 2010 board of directors election.

Nine candidates are vying for six seats on the board.

Sask Pork general Manager Neil Ketilson says there are four key issues the new board will need to address.

Clip-Neil Ketilson-Saskatchewan Pork Development Board :
We need to think about the sustainability of the industry in this province, who the players are right now, what we need to do to maintain and encourage production here and how do we maintain our competitive edge in the global market place.

That's first and foremost.

Secondly, and I think it's part and parcel with that, is Saskatchewan does not have a federally inspected packing plant and I think we all recognize that that is a negative aspect of production here in the province.

We need to continue to work on strategies either to enhance our ability to have a packing plant at some point in time and or cooperate with the other packing plants that are our there and see if we can't mitigate the costs of the long transportation costs.

Thirdly I think we've all recognized that financially the industry has gone through some very difficult times and we need to make sure that the government programs that are out there both federal and provincial meet the needs of the industry both the present day as well as into the future so we've got a lot of work to do there.

Fourthly we need to make sure that we are doing the things for the international as well as the domestic market that make a difference for us.

Things like traceability, the animal welfare, all those kinds of basic core things that we need to do as an industry are done and done well and done consistently across the country.

Sask Pork's new board of directors will be announced November 17 in Saskatoon.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

       *Farmscape is a presentation of Sask Pork and Manitoba Pork Council