NDP Increase Support for Hog Slaughter in Saskatchewan; a response

July 11, 2022

Dear Editor:

Last week’s weak-kneed decision by the Saskatchewan and Saskatoon governments to cave in to the forces of the hog industry and “the stakeholders” for some short-term financial gains from the increased production, slaughter and processing of hogs in this province spells nothing short of disaster for all Saskatchewan residents.

In June, the provincial government dished out $37.3 million for a new push to ‘grow’ the meat processing industry. Last week, there was the $35 million grant (gift) to help Maple Leaf move in to the (still) beautiful city of Saskatoon with its expanded slaughter capacity. There’s the ongoing 70% government ownership of Big Sky Hog Farm with Sask Investment’s $15 million to keep it operating (at a loss!). To say nothing of the constant ‘propping-up’ of failing hog/slaughter operations and the hundreds of thousands of dollars given to this industry from the federal CARDS program...

What this really means is: more toxic hog manure on our land and increased potential for contamination of our water sources; more pollution in the Saskatchewan River and the inevitable loss of our tourist and fishing industries; more broken communities as they fight to keep more pig factories from destroying their livelihood, lifestyle and land values; more sick kids from the toxic and dangerous fumes from the hog barns; more traffic on our over-taxed road system, more noise, etc., etc. - as we relentlessly work our way towards other Walkerton’s across the province.

It also means less support for small family farmers who produce food from animals using humane, safe and sustainable methods.

Is this obsession with the meat industry all this government knows? Is this the ONLY vision our local, provincial and federal governments have for the future of this province, awash in hog manure? Is this the best we get from these decision-makers who are elected to protect our environmental and health rights?

There must be a better way to build the equity for Saskatchewan’s future generations!

Elaine Hughes

Archerwill, SK