Manitoba pork research funding on hold
By Marg Land
May 27, 2008, Winnipeg, Man. – The
Manitoba Pork Council has put a “temporary pause” on all of its
research funding in light of the permanent moratorium that has been
placed on the hog industry.
May 27, 2008, Winnipeg, Man. – The Manitoba Pork Council has put a “temporary pause” on all of its research funding in light of the permanent moratorium that has been placed on the hog industry.
Earlier this year, the Manitoba government put a permanent moratorium on the province’s hog industry. That was despite the fact that the government’s own Clean Environment Commission (CEC) report, which cost taxpayers nearly $750,000, said the hog industry in Manitoba is sustainable and did not recommend a hog barn ban.
“Why should producers invest in environmental research when our government doesn’t listen to its own research results?” says Bryan Ferriss, vice-chairman of Manitoba Pork Council and chairman of the council’s research committee. “The government has its own agenda – and it is based on political science, not research science.”
For 2008, Manitoba Pork Council originally budgeted $583,000 of its producer funds for research, which included funding to the University of Manitoba , Lake Winnipeg Research Consortium , Manitoba Livestock Manure Management Initiative and Prairie Swine Centre .
“That funding has been put on hold for now so we can re-evaluate where we spend hog farmers’ money,” explains Ferriss, who farms near Swan River, Man. “We may be forced to put our own permanent moratorium on environmental research funding.”
Since 1999, Manitoba Pork Council has invested more than $5 million towards third-party independent research and environmental stewardship initiatives on behalf of its members. It is estimated that Manitoba Pork Council’s financial contributions have leveraged an additional $30 million from other sources for organizations such as the University of Manitoba.