The Ontario government is providing beef and hog farmers with $10-million in order to offset the costs of keeping animals ready for the market.

The money will be split evenly between the two groups and is meant to provide farmers with money to keep market-ready animals fed.  Called a set-aside program it allows beef farmers up to $2.00 per day to feed cattle that should be sent to processing plants.  Ontario has seen a shortage in processing plant capacity due to the COVID-19 pandemic and that means farmers have to hold on to their animals longer than normal.

In addition, the province is giving $1.5-million dollars to process and package surplus pork for food banks allowing pork processing plants to manage capacity.

“During consultations with the pork and beef sectors, the need for emergency support to help them maintain their operations during COVID-19 was clear,” said Ernie Hardeman, Ontario Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs. “We understand the challenges that our farmers are facing and we are working with our commodity organizations to address their priorities and help our farmers manage through these unprecedented times.”

Both the beef cattle set-aside and hog sector support programs are being offered through AgriRecovery initiatives, under the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.