Hog prices best in years
Many pig farmers still carrying debt
Hog producers on P.E.I. are seeing some the highest prices in years.
Current prices are about $2.25 a kilogram. That compares to $1.80 last year and around $1.60 back in 2012.
Tim Seeber, executive director of the P.E.I. Hog Marketing Board, said the increase in price is fuelled by demand following the loss of several million hogs in the United States from the PED virus outbreak. Seeber noted, however, costs for farmers are also up.
"Feed costs are higher now than they were back then, especially soy meal is very high right now," said Seeber.
"Our cost of transportation to market is higher now than it ever was before so there is a lot of things that are impacting on the potential margin that we could have if everything variable stayed the same."
Seeber said many producers on the Island still have heavy debt loads from years of poor prices, and it will take years of good returns for producers to get rid of that debt.
In 2002 there were about 400 on P.E.I., but there are now only about 22.