Today, the Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, and the Member of Parliament for Vaudreuil–Soulanges, Peter Schiefke, highlighted an investment of up to $5 million that helped CBCo Alliance increase capacity at its new hog processing facility in Les Cèdres, Quebec.
This investment, made through the Emergency Processing Fund, supported infrastructure upgrades and the purchase and installation of advanced processing equipment to increase productivity and boost production capacity. According to the company’s projection, it will have the capacity to process up to 20,000 hogs per week by 2024.
The new facility began operations in November 2020 and is expected to create a total of 250 jobs in Vaudreuil–Soulanges once it is running at full capacity. This project supports the sustainability of Canada’s domestic food supply and increases hog processing capacity in Quebec, both now and in the future.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused significant challenges for Canada’s meat processing sector, and has shown the need for more diversified processing capacity. That is why the Government of Canada responded with targeted investments to help meat processors invest in safety measures to protect their workers and in facility improvements to ensure a strong food supply for Canadians.
“This is a significant development for the local economy near Vaudreuil, and a big help to the processing capacity challenges we have experienced over the past number of years. With this investment, CBCo Alliance is setting up a state-of-the-art facility to increase hog processing capacity here in Quebec, which helps our producers continue to deliver quality pork products to our grocery shelves. This project not only responds to challenges brought on by COVID-19, but also positions the industry for a stronger future.”
– The Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food
“The Quebec pork industry is an important contributor to our economy. While COVID-19 caused many challenges for the meat processing industry both here and across the country, the sector continued to step up. Through this funding, the Government of Canada supported equipment upgrades to help this local business increase capacity throughout the pandemic. And it’s an investment that will boost the competitiveness and strengthen the resilience of our food supply for the future.”
– Peter Schiefke, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship and Member of Parliament for Vaudreuil–Soulanges
“We are very pleased to participate in the development of pork slaughter and processing in Quebec. We are proud to be Canadian pork producers and we want the best for this industry. This plant is the future of our organizations.”
– Mario Côté, Jocelyn Bertrand and Janin Boucher, Co-Owners, CBCo Alliance
- Announced in May 2020, the $77.5-million Emergency Processing Fund helped food processors implement measures to protect the health and safety of workers and their families in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with an emphasis on supporting meat processing facilities in Canada. The Fund also supported facility upgrades to ensure a strong food supply in Canada. A further $10 million was allocated from internal funds, which brought the total to $87.5 million.
- CBCo Alliance Inc. was created in April 2019, when three well-established businesses–Élevages J. Bertrand Inc., Le Groupe Cérès Inc., and Groupe Mario Côté Inc.–came together to purchase and renovate a processing plant in Les Cèdres, Quebec, which had been idle for more than 10 years. The company now operates a federally-registered pork abattoir and processing facility.
- The Quebec pork industry supports approximately 31,000 jobs. Seventy percent of the industry’s production is exported, which was valued at $2.15 billion in 2020.
- On April 15, 2021, the goverments of Canada and Quebec announced the creation of the Canada-Quebec Livestock Assistance Initiative to help mitigate the consequences of COVID-19 in 2020-2021. The Initiative falls under the AgriRecovery response framework, which is part of the suite of Business Risk Management programs of the Canadian Agricultural Partnership.
- The Emergency Processing Fund was part of the Government of Canada’s COVID response and built on other measures to keep Canada’s agri-workforce strong, including:
- the Mandatory Isolation Support for Temporary Foreign Workers Program, a $142-million program to assist Canadian employers with some of the incremental costs associated with the mandatory 14-day isolation period as well as costs associated with the 3-day hotel quarantine imposed under the Quarantine Act on temporary foreign workers upon entering into Canada; and,
- the $35-million Emergency On-Farm Support Fund to boost protections for domestic and temporary foreign workers and address COVID-19 outbreaks on farms.