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Maple Leaf’s hog demand steady at Brandon

(Resource News International) — Hog deliveries to Maple Leaf Foods’ pork processing facility at Brandon, Man. appear unaffected by the listeria outbreak that forced the recall of over 200 meat products across Canada and the indefinite closure of the company’s Bartor Road plant in Toronto.

“There has been no drop-off in demand for hogs from Maple Leaf’s Brandon facility and producers have not slowed deliveries because of the listeria situation,” said Perry Mohr, CEO for Manitoba Pork Marketing.

“Because Maple Leaf has so many brand names, there has been little drop-off in consumer demand for pork products from the company,” he said. “As long as demand from the plant remains constant, deliveries of hogs will also be maintained.”

Producers, at least in Manitoba, obviously remain concerned about the listeria outbreak, but remain committed to meeting contractual obligations with Maple Leaf, Mohr said.

Officials from Maple Leaf Foods were not available for comment.

Maple Leaf’s Brandon facility, which opened in September 1999 with an initial hog slaughter capacity of 45,000 to 50,000 per week, expanded to 75,000 hogs per week in October 2007 with the closure of some Maple Leaf plants in Winnipeg.

The Brandon plant is slated to expand its slaughter rate capacity to 86,000 hogs per week after improvements have been completed at the city’s waste water treatment plant late in 2009.

Manitoba Pork Marketing is a marketing agency for about 900 producer members who produce 1.5 million hogs per year. The agency represents the single largest volume of hogs in the province.

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