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KAP Calls for Environmental Focus During CEC Assessment of Manitoba's Hog Industry

by 5m Editor
7 February 2007, at 11:59am

CANADA - Keystone Agricultural Producers is encouraging the Manitoba Clean Environment Commission to maintain a strictly environmental focus as it investigates the environmental sustainability of the province's swine industry, writes Bruce Cochrane.

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The Manitoba Clean Environment Commission has scheduled hearings through March and April to gather public input as part of its examination of the environmental sustainability of Manitoba's hog industry and is now identifying key issues to be addressed.

KAP Vice President Ian Wishart says his organization is looking for a strictly environmental focus.

Ian Wishart-Keystone Agricultural Producers

Certainly we saw some individuals coming into the scoping hearings that wanted to talk about things that we don't really think are part of this whole process.

A lot of it with social implications to expanding the industry and that doesn't seem to be in their mandate as would be suggested even with their name.

It's an environment commission and the issue of economics and such beyond the farm gate is probably not something we should be covering as part of this.

We're trying to keep it focused a little bit, not have a whole lot of opinion, trying to deal with the science and the facts.

We think it's appropriate that they look at the nutrient management issues and that sort of thing and how it relates to the existing and proposed regulations both on manure management and on nutrient management but not to get too animal welfare or social issues to any significant degree.

We think this whole process is a little inappropriate targeting the hog industry which has probably been one of the sectors that has taken the most steps in terms of dealing with environmental concerns but that decision has been made.

That was a political decision.

We want to get through the process as quickly as possible with a focus on the science that's behinds a lot of these problems and how things can be dealt with and we would like to see them do that.

Wishart says there's always room for improvement but he expects the commission to find the sustainability of the industry is quite good.

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