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Canadian Hog Producer Optimism on the Rise

30 January 2012, at 11:07am

CANADA - Optimism among hog producers is on the rise. In 2011 three quarters of hog producers (75 per cent) agree that their farm or business will be better off five years from now, according to a new survey by Canada's federal agriculture lender, Farm Credit Canada, which released results from a national survey of its Vision panel.

This is up significantly from 2010 when sixty nine percent of hog producers felt this way. Although hog producers are evenly divided on the question of whether their operation is better off now than it was five years earlier (52 per cent agree), this measure has increased substantially from 2009 when one third of producers (34 per cent) felt that their operation is better.

Although hog producers are feeling optimistic of the future and agree that their operation is better off now than five years earlier, they are more hesitant to recommend agricultural careers than most other sectors. Half of all hog producers (54 per cent) would recommend a career in primary production compared to the national average of seven in ten (69 per cent). Seven in ten hog producers (73 per cent) would recommend an agricultural related career, which is lower than the national average (80 per cent) but still represents a substantial portion of producers who are optimistic about agricultural careers.

This year saw a slight decrease in the number of hog producers who plan to expand or diversify their operation (2010, 62 per cent; 2011, 45 per cent) coupled with an increase in the number of producers who plan to reduce their operation or exit the industry (2010, nine per cent; 2011, 24 per cent).

While there may be uncertainty in the sector, hog producers feel that their operations are better off today than they were five years earlier and they are optimistic about the future. With eight in ten hog producers (80 per cent) reporting to be comfortable talking about their industry with those outside agriculture, this sector is more comfortable doing so than producers in most other sectors (71 per cent).