With the increasing number of employees at the Cargill Meat Processing Facility in High River that have been confirmed to have COVID-19, the company decided to temporarily close the plant on Monday.
As it processes one-third of Canada's beef, Alberta Beef Producers are concerned as to where they will be able to bring their animals for processing. Kelly Smith-Fraser, the Chair of the Alberta Beef Producers shared some updates on Wednesday. She states that "industry must be prepared for the stoppage possibly to continue for an extended period of time." According to Smith-Fraser, Alberta Beef Producers supports the set of recommendations that the Canadian Cattlemen's Association continues to advocate for regarding changes to business risk management program. To see the changes visit the Alberta Beef Producers website.
Smith-Fraser believes the situation for ranchers is critical and thinks that any further delay in implementing government policies to help producers will cripple the industry. "The Canadian Cattlemen's Association have run economic scenarios showing industry could see revenue losses upward of 500 million dollars by the end of June, depending on how far market prices decline," notes Smith-Fraser. She also comments that if losses are near this amount, it could be catastrophic for 60,000 beef operations and over 228,000 Canadians that depend on the cattle industry for their livelihood.
The Alberta Beef Producers have created a letter for producers to send to their MLA about the situation and can be found at their website.Click here to see more...