LONGUEUIL, QC, Nov. 10 /CNW Telbec/ - The very first Canadian Conference on Pork Quality was held on November 3rd and 4th in Montreal. An initiative of the Fédération des producteurs de porcs du Québec (FPPQ), the goal of the seminar was to offer a Canadian forum for discussion on the best ways to promote Canadian pork on local as well as international markets.
"Although the Canadian pork industry has a strong foundation and adaptability, we also face some major challenges," recognized Fédération des producteurs de porcs du Québec President Jean-Guy Vincent. "A dialogue has become necessary, thus the initiative led by Québec's pork producers to open up, for the first time, a forum for discussion to all the provinces. The forum has allowed us to share our efforts, opportunities and challenges with respect to innovations in pork quality and differentiation."
During the past year, the FPPQ has been working tirelessly on organizing this event. To reach their goal, they worked with the Centre québécois de valorisation des biotechnologies (CQVB) who has contributed greatly to the organization of the conference. The CQVB facilitates innovation and technology transfer in the animal industry in Quebec.
Ten speakers led presentations on the themes of Innovation, Quality and Strategy. The goal of the presentations was to offer solutions on ways to differentiate Canadian pork. Approximately 130 attendees had the chance to participate in a panel discussion on what opportunities exist for producers, processors and distributors to develop a strategy for differentiation. "The information provided during these discussions" states Édouard Asnong, President of Canada Pork International, "will be used to develop a strategic plan for the International Pork Marketing Fund."
The rewarding discussions that took place during the two days of the conference had the effect of uniting the industry around a common goal. All participants recognized the urgency of protecting the local market and expressed a desire to work with the entire value chain to reach common objectives. "Domestic marketing must be improved if we want to continue exporting to international markets," says Mr. Vincent. "Despite all the efforts made toward innovation in the Canadian pork industry, we are lagging behind in terms of the diversity of products on local markets." The seminar was also an occasion to emphasize the contribution of research and development necessary to maintain our capacity to innovate.
It is now clear that pork quality standards must be consistent and that it is necessary to develop Canadian standards in order to hold a position of importance on various markets. Jacques Pomerleau, Executive Director of Canada Pork International concludes: "We have a good reputation in terms of product quality on export markets and we must continue our efforts to maintain and improve our position".
Last August, the Federal Government created the International Pork Marketing Fund, allocating 17 million dollars over a 4-year period to Canada Pork International. The pork industry as a whole will benefit from this fund that has as its goal the differentiation of Canadian pork from its competitors in international markets. This seminar is the first in a series of consultations that will take place within the pork industry toward the development of a strategic plan.
These meetings could not have been held without financial support. "The FPPQ would like to thank the sector councils of Québec, Ontario and Saskatchewan for their crucial financial assistance through the Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food (ACAAF) program of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. We would also like to thank the following organizations for their assistance and financial contribution: Alberta Pork, Canada Pork International, Manitoba Pork, Olymel, Ontario Pork, Saskatchewan Pork and Value Added Meat program," states Mr Vincent.
ABOUT THE FPPQ
The Fédération des producteurs de porcs du Québec represents the interests of 3900 producers from 12 regional associations. Québec pork producers raise 7.5 million hogs annually generating 1.5 billion dollars in revenue, benefiting every region in the province. Pork production employs 24 000 people in Québec. Sixty percent of pork produced in Québec is exported to over 75 countries.
SOURCE Fédération des producteurs de porcs du Québec
For further information: For further information: Stéphanie Fortin, Public Affairs Advisor, Fédération des producteurs de porcs du Québec, (450) 679-0540, ext. 8542, email@example.com; Source: Fédération des producteurs de porcs du Québec