Pig market expert Kevin Grier said the producers will be better off shipping their animals to Maple Leaf’s primary processing plant in Brandon, Manitoba instead of to the north end of Saskatoon.
Saskatchewan producers fear that transporting pigs that far will cost them US $5 to $9 more per animal.
Grier believes that Saskatchewan will stay the lowest priced region in North American for producing pigs and that wil give the region an advantage.
The Maple Leaf Foods in Saskatoon will close in the next three years. Plans for building a new plant were abandoned last week.
Manitoba Pork Council, on the other hand, is pleased with the company’s decision to concentrate business in Brandon. Chairman Karl Kynoch noted that it’s very reassuring to the province’s producers that Maple Leaf has recognised Manitoba as a leader in the pig industry.