May 17, 1939 (18th Parliament, 4th Session)


Mark Cecil Senn

Conservative (1867-1942)


I fully agree with the hon. member who has just spoken when he says that rail grading is a proper method, and that it is designed sooner or laiter to be the only manner in which hogs are graded on the market. One thing, however, which should have consideration at this time is the differential between the prices of hogs on the hoof and hogs on the rail. The farmer has the opportunity and the privilege of electing whether he shall be paid on the rail grade basis or on the hoof. Who sets that differential from time to time between dive hogs and dressed hogs? After, all the incentive to a farmer to rail grade depends very largely on whether that differential is in proper proportion. If it is not in proper proportion and he gets a little more than he should get for hogs graded on the rail, or otherwise, it will affect his position in time to come. The department might very well exercise some supervision over that differential.
Speaking a little while ago about the quality of our bacon overseas the minister said that much of it was not in proper sizes. I remember distinctly a question on the order paper which indicated that grade A sizables of Canadian bacon going to the old country constituted forty-eight per cent of the total which went over last year. If we are going to have properly sized bacon going over there, some inducement must be offered to the farmer to grade his hogs to proper size. As the minister said last night, there are times in Montreal, Winnipeg and other centres when farmers get more per pound for shop hogs than they get for hogs of proper size. When that happens there is very little inducement to a farmer to raise the right type of hog. It is true there are times when shop hogs
are more valuable >to the local butcher than hogs in larger sizes. Is there any departmental supervision over the differential between prices of hogs graded on the hoof and those graded on the rail?

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