‘Don’t take too long’
Maritime beef producers ask governments for support
The organizations that represent cattle producers in P.E.I., Nova Scotia and New Brunswick want federal andprovincialhelptogrowtheMaritime beef industry.
The groups formed the Maritime Beef Council eight years ago, have developed the Maritime Beef Sector Growth Strategy over the past 16 months.
The strategy includes expanding the Maritime beef herd by 20,000 head in the next 10 years, a goal based on market demand and projected growth.
Russ Mallard, president of the Atlantic Beef Products (ABP) processing plant in Albany, P.E.I., attended
the opening day of the Atlantic Beef Summit recently in Fox Harbour, N.S., where members of the council met with industry and government leaders.
Mallard said ABP has customers looking for more product right now.
“ABP could take 200 head every week, starting next week,” he said. “The sooner we get to that number, the better. Let’s get it done, but don’t take too long.”
NathanPhinney,chairoftheMaritime Beef Council and a beef feedlot operator near Sackville, N.B., said the path to increase cattle production through the Maritime Beef Strategy includes an industry wide, regional approach. “The beef sectors in our individual provinces are too small to take on this growth to meet the marketdemand,”saidPhinney.“Weneed to collaborate on everything from research and education opportunities to supplying processing plants and the production of quality feed for our animals.”
During the opening day of the Atlantic Beef Summit, the council introduced its growth strategy to industry leaders and toured a nearby communitypasturetoseehowsome Nova Scotia farmers are already working together to increase profits. The meetings continued Wednesday, when those in attendance were scheduled to discuss moving the strategy into the implementation phase.