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Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister Applauds Government Industry Partnership

Saskatchewan's Agriculture Minister is applauding a cooperative government industry partnership that's helping prepare for the trade disruptions that could occur as a result of a foreign animal disease incursion.

In response to the threat of African Swine Fever, the Government of Saskatchewan and the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board have committed one million dollars to swine disease mitigation, including the addition of a dedicated cull line into the North 49 sow processing facility being built in Moose Jaw by Donald's Fine Foods.

Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister David Marit says, in the event African Swine Fever does get into the North American continent, we have no idea how the markets will react.

Clip-David Marit-Saskatchewan Agriculture Minister:

We've been having discussions with the federal government on African Swine Fever and the impact it would have on the hog industry right across the country.
We felt it was important to be proactive and look at ways that, in the event we would have to do a humane slaughter of the hog industry, how we would do it.
African Swine Fever could be tomorrow.Let's pray to God it isn't but it could be and then how do you react?

It just so happened that Donald's Fine Foods had purchased the old XL beef plant in Moose Jaw and were converting it to a sow slaughter plant which would be the only one in western Canada.

We entered discussions with them and they thought they could put a line in that would allow this to happen.We worked together with them along with Sask Pork and found the means to transfer them some dollars to put this line in.Donald's Find Foods is also putting some money in this as well.This isn't just us and Sask pork.They are also committed to this as well.We felt it was obviously a great way to do it.It just helps be prepared for it.I hope we never have to use but if we ever have to we have the facility now in place to allow that to happen.

Marit suggests forward thinking on the part of the Government of Saskatchewan, Sask Pork and Donald's Fine Foods allowed this facility to be put in place and, in the event it's needed, it's there.

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