Times have rarely looked tougher for Canada’s pork and beef producers than projections indicate for 2008. Reportage on the status of these major livestock industries begins on page 14. High feed prices, fluctuating currency, more regulations on both raising livestock and processing – it is taking a toll.
On top of all of that, markets between Canada and the United States no longer seem to be in synchronicity. A volatile Canadian dollar is not a good thing for mainstream agriculture in this country. While the prices that farmers get for the commodities they produce change almost immediately with currency fluctuations, input costs do not. Ontario Pork chairman Curtiss Littlejohn has described the result of the poor prices as “an equity avalanche.”