Shuttered Quebec pork processor notifies producers it intends to cancel contracts

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Olymel has told pork producers in Ontario who ship it products to process that it intends to exercise the force majeure clause due to the COVID-19 pandemic to get out of its purchasing contracts.

Olymel has told pork producers in Ontario who ship it products to process that it intends to exercise the force majeure clause due to the COVID-19 pandemic to get out of its purchasing contracts.

The company shut down operations at its plant in Yamachiche, Que. for two weeks last week after nine employees at the facility tested positive for the new coronavirus. The closure affects about 1,000 employees.

Ontario pork producers normally ship around 20,000 pigs into Quebec each week, according to Ontario Pork. Real Agriculture spoke to a source who says Olymel wants to continue purchasing hogs from their neighbouring province during the pandemic but at a reduced volume.

In this Op-Ed, Kelly Harris, the Principal at Harris Public Affairs in Toronto, looks at if COVID-19 is a force majeure.

Around Town

MPs and Senators are on a break from sitting due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said on Wednesday his government would like to recall Parliament to pass more aid measures.

The Egg Farmers of Canada on Friday announced a $25,000 donation to Food Banks of Canada to help prevent a shortage of food due to the pandemic.

In Canada

Alberta Agriculture Minister Devin Dreeshan says the provincial government is currently identifying the skills of unemployed Albertans to match them with potential empty jobs in the agricultural sector and in the food supply chain.

Dreeshan says the province will be rolling out a job matching program soon because “whether you wash dishes for a restaurant, washing potatoes isn’t much different,” adding, “we want to make sure that unemployed Albertans have the opportunity to be to identify places they could be working in our ag and food supply chain.”

Those details are from Real Agriculture.

Internationally

China’s ban on the sale of wild animals has frozen the exports of monkeys used for pharmaceutical research, switching a measure put in place to prevent the spread of COVID-19 into one that’s now an obstacle in the fight against the pandemic. The Globe and Mail reports.

Russia’s decision from six years ago to ban most Western food imports is currently helping the country navigate the coronavirus crisis, as the country is equipped with enough homegrown stocks to withstand panic buying and other food supply challenges. The country banned Western cheese, vegetables and dozens of other products in 2014 in retaliation against sanctions by Europe and the U.S. for its annexing of Crimea.

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