Participate in new market access program, cattlemen urged

CANADA - Many smaller beef producers could be missing out on premium prices or better markets as a result of not getting involved in the industry's new Market Access Program
calendar icon 6 April 2007
clock icon 2 minute read
Cindy Leahy, a Ministry of Agriculture and Food staffer from Buckhorn who looks after east central Ontario, told the annual Information Meeting of the Northumberland Cattlemen's Association at Hard's Station Mar. 29 that the program has been modified in recent months. It is now easier to participate and an incentive reward is also available.

The program is required for packer-processors under export sales agreement to firmly establish the ages of cattle whose meat is targeted for those markets, especially to the United States, she said.

Most large producers have already bought into the program but many smaller producers are missing out, even though she argued, "it's easy to do."

Qualificatioins include records-verifying the age of calves, either through provincial or federal beef industry organizations, committing to complete a two-hour course on the program by Dec. 31 and establishing a veterinarian-approved vaccination program for current year calves.

Costs for the program run $4 or more for a radio frequency identification tag, but that cost can be rebated by $3 per tag when once qualifies. Some cattlemen's association are also subsidizing the cost of the course, she noted.

"The program has changed a lot and it is a lot easier to manage and we must get that message out," said Ms. Leahy, who stressed that it "works as well for both small and large producers."

Source: Northumberland Today
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