Survey looks at meat processing in the province

National Farmers Union Ontario

The NFU-O Livestock Committee has shared the results of a meat processing survey with Ontario agriculture officials.

The survey looked at provincially-licensed abattoirs and their ability to increase processing capacity.

Tim Dowling is the chair of the NFU’s livestock committee and a beef farmer. He states that despite the huge increase in demand due to COVID-19, the abattoir system is not set up to take on the growth. And some farmers are having to wait months for a kill date, which is a lost opportunity for the farmer.

The NFU-O’s survey found that there were three major factors in the lack of capacity at provincially-certified abattoirs.

Labour shortages and an absence of successors were raised by 83% of respondents.

Numerous abattoirs also indicated that both the lack of additional inspectors as well as the dynamic between inspectors and plants slowed down or reduced processing capacity at their abattoir.