WHEREAS Canadian cow-calf, dairy and purebred cattle operators require an outlet for cull cattle;AND WHEREAS the market for cull cattle has collapsed since the May 20, 2003 closure of Canadas export markets for the beef industry;AND WHEREAS the loss of salvage value for these cull animals and costs incurred for continued feeding of these livestock is compounding the impact of the BSE crisis throughout all sectors of the livestock industry;AND WHEREAS there has been a partial opening of export markets for beef from animals less than 30 months of age but there is an uncertain prospect of markets opening for animals over 30 months of age;AND WHEREAS the current processing capacity for cull cattle within Canada is far below the level required to accommodate the ongoing domestic supply;AND WHEREAS the proper processing of livestock-related waste generated from a facility of this nature will also require a significant investment in the exploration and implementation of new technology (which may include digester systems) to ensure an adequate outlet exists for the offal material from processed cull cattle;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties request that the provincial and federal governments facilitate the immediate development of a beef processing plant designed to process cull beef livestock in excess of 30 months of age, and pursue the development and implementation of technology that will provide an economically viable alternative for processing the waste stream associated with a plant of this nature.
With the closure of Canadas export markets following the May 20, 2003 announcement of BSE, the market for cull cattle collapsed. The continued supply of cull cattle from all sectors of the livestock industry will far exceed current domestic processing capacity. It is likely that when export markets open for live cattle and all cuts of beef, there will be a requirement to restrict the shipment of livestock and meat products from cattle older than 30 months of age. It is further anticipated that there will be an ongoing requirement to segregate these products, thus preventing existing plants that process young feeder cattle from accepting cull livestock.In view of the continued supply of cull cattle that is anticipated after the BSE crisis has subsided and the absolute need for an outlet for these livestock, the immediate development of a processing plant that is designed exclusively to process cull cattle should be a top priority.
The AAMDC has no resolutions currently in effect with respect to this issue.On October 24, 2003, the Hon. Shirley McClellan, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Development, announced a $4-million Beef Product and Market Development Program to assist the Alberta beef industry to process and market meat products from cattle over 30 months of age. One focus is to assist expansion of further beef processing in Alberta to utilize beef from cattle older than 30 months. Eligible costs include feasibility studies, capital costs related to the design, development, acquisition and installation of equipment to be used in processing. Technology evaluation and adoption expenses are also covered under the program.