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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - November 23, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta U.S. quotas little problem for Canadian livestock producers By RIC SWIHART Herald Staff Writer Natural price advantages in Canada are limiting the hardships on Canadian cattle and hog producers resulting from import quotas imposed by the United States retroac- tive to Aug. 12, industry spokesmen say. Don Robins of Calgary, a member of the Canadian Cattlemen's Association, told The Herald in a telephone interview Friday there is still room in the quota for Cana- dian cattle, both live and dressed, to enter the U.S. The quota for dressed beef is 17 million pounds on the basis of equal amounts for each month during one year. Live cattle shipments from Canada will be limited to 000 head per year. Mr. Robins said according to federal department of agriculture statistics, Cana- dian producers have shipped 9.3 million pounds of dressed beef to the U.S. since Aug. 12. If the quota is to be fully im- plemented. Canadians won't be able to ship any more dressed beef to the U.S. until about March 1 to allow the quota to catch up with shipments. He said the bulk of the dressed beef going to the U.S. is boneless cow beef destined for the processing market. Only limited amounts of grain-fed beef move south of the border. Cattle producers in the west will be hardest hit because there is a higher population of cows in the area. Because of the pressure being exerted on the cow market, prices have dropped six cents per pound on carcasses on the Montreal market the past two weeks. He said cow prices in Alberta are about the lowest in the world now. While these prices are low, good quality cattle prices are staying high. Some relief might be com- ing from this low-price situation, he said. Canada now imports considerable amounts of beef from Australia but the low price for cows in Canada may bring a halt to that in favor of domestic cattle. Using more of the domestic cattle in Canada will help to offset some of the pressure exerted on the 10 per cent of Canada's cow kill which nor- mally goes to the U.S. Live cattle shipments aren't entering the quota picture now, said Mr. Robins. Mr. Robins said there aren't burdensome numbers of cattle in Canada now, resulting in prices which are still above 50 cents per pound for fat steers He said because of the pressure of the quota, prices have dropped somewhat but he expects it not to fall below 46 cents per pound roughly the breakeven point for many producers. The main fear of the Cana- dian Cattlemen's Association now is that the federal govern- ment may open the U.S. Canada border. This would br- ing in a flood of U.S. slaughter animals, depressing the local price to the 30-cent-per-pound range prevalent in the U.S. This would cause huge losses for cattle feeders here which would be passed on to cow-calf operators who supply animals for the feedlots. Hogs, with a live animal quota of 4.000 per month and a dressed basis quota of 17 million pounds per year, also aren't affected to any degree. Ed Schultz of Edmonton, general manager of the Alberta Hog Producers Marketing Board, said in a telephone interview from his office that prices in both Irish pubs bomb targets LONDON