The Shotgun Blog
Monday, August 17, 2009
Hog Farm Bail-Outs
The hog industry in Canada has seen some hard times lately, and after begging for $800 million government dollars now they are being offering a nice little financial incentive to get out of the hog business, $75 million tax payer dollars.
Speaking at a research farm in rural Manitoba Saturday, (federal Agriculture Minister Gerry Ritz) said some hog operations are not viable and those farmers need help.
"We have to face the reality that some producers will leave the industry and we need to reduce our current over-supply," he said.
It's just another bail-out. If an industry is failing, then let it fail! If people want to get out of a business, then let them get out of it. Artificially sustaining failing business is not economically sound. The industry can correct itself without forcing Canadian taxpayers to fork over the cash.
"Is it what we wanted? Of course, straight cash is always nicer without any strings attached, but the reality is that wasn't going to happen," said Jurgen Preugschas, president of the Canadian Pork Council.
Yes Jurgen, straight cash would be very nice, so go out and earn it instead of expecting the Canadian public to pay for your failing businesses!
If there is not enough demand to meet the supply, then reduce prices and perhaps you sell more. Reducing the supply is the responsibility of the business owners, not the customers and not the general public.
I welcome feedback and I ask for civility in the exchange of comments. Vulgarity is discouraged. Please express yourself creatively with other language. We discuss ideas here, attacks on a person are discouraged.
Canadian Bacon is endangered?? say it ain't so. =o)
Posted by: Floyd Looney | 2009-08-17 10:15:38 AM
Most of the "farmers" that Ritz refers to are actually non-farmer investors. Many hog barns today are owned by large feed companies. There are very few mom-and-pop hog operations left in existence, not that that would justify a bailout either.
These people bet on the wrong investment horse; why can't we just accept that they made a bad decision and have to live with the consequences? The last thing the hog industry needs are policies that encourage barns to stay open and produce hogs that the industry can't sell profitably. Hog production numbers are way out of line with what is sustainable. The free market can deal with this problem equitably and fairly; Ritz needs to learn to stay out of the way.
Posted by: Dennis | 2009-08-17 10:30:37 AM
"They need help"??? They need to go out of business. Period. Like GM! I don't see a corresponding crash in price of hog farm "products" at the grocery store. No "head 'em up and move 'em out" pricing. What's with the Liberal/Conservative party these days? They trying to do it all for canadjians? Where's my bailout, Ritz?
That's another $2.50 I'm deducting from my federal income tax filing for 2009. GM should be about $363 for each of us or more like $726 as only about half of us actually work in Canada, maybe less. Anyone? Good message to send to the CRA and those revenooo goons. Make their heads explode.
Posted by: po'd in AB | 2009-08-17 12:30:48 PM
Hog farming has always been a gamble. We shouldn't be bailing out gamblers.
As Dennis pointed out, hog operations are usually big corporations. Many Alberta operations are owned by communes, as in hutterites. They already have an unfair tax advantage, why give them another leg up?
Posted by: dp | 2009-08-17 12:50:31 PM
We shouldn't be bailing anyone out, it just encourages more reckless behaviour.
Posted by: Charles | 2009-08-17 1:31:56 PM
The fact is the "bailout" has nothing to do with concern for farmers but about a bailout for the banks that leant money to these guys?
The other fact is this: Because there is no real agricultural policy in this country the provinces promoted the hog business to the extent where we have a huge surplus of hogs. Don't forget who pumped the money into packing plants, hogbarns etc. to increase jobs? Maybe all governments own some of this problem?
Posted by: doug | 2009-08-25 5:17:59 AM
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