Re: Opinion of Big Hog Farms
Greg and Lei Gunthorp (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Fri, 19 Dec 97 18:31:07 PST
Where do we find the article? I've got a feeling Dennis Avery is full of ****! These large operations
are in general making their living off the backs of the contract finishers who get little or negative returns
on "their minimal investments". (especially if we add management and labor figures to cost!) These large operations don't spend money in local communities. They don't even finish the hogs in the community
they are raised in! Most are farrowed out of state and shipped to the Midwest for finishing because of
cheaper corn and better hog prices. Buildings cost more in the Midwest but the big guys aren't putting up
I'm not an anti comfinement person. I'm definately not going out to support them though. Any system of hog production can cause environmental damage without proper management. Some systems have higher potential damages from the start! Some have no chance of containing odors from the start either! The ones I feel sorry for is the people who have to work in the buildings. Humans lungs weren't designed to take the dust, ammonia, hydrogen sulfides, etc. The biggest problem in my opinion is economics of the contract finishing.
Does Dennis realize that it takes at least a $500,000 investment to make a "full time living" raising hogs on contract for these big guys who are so great for the local communities? Does he also realize that a
person that "invests" this money for somebody else has no options but to raise hogs under somebody elses
rules? Also hog equipment inside a building(very corrosive environment) doesn't outlast contracts?
Why is hog contracting going to be any different than the contract egg, broiler, duck, or turkey business?
I don't know of anyone in my area happy with those "deals of a lifetime" that they got into. Does
anybody else know of any happy contract finishers? I'd really like to hear from some and see how their
contracts are structured.
This CFO issues is just another example of us forgeting the principles of the free enterprise system. To
have the whole system work properly we need more competition not less. We need more businesses and farms that fail or succeed by their own management and work. We have too few producers and definately too few processors. We don't need more large hog farms and larger meat processors. We need small, independant pasture hog producers and small, independant, local meat processors. We need to structure
laws, regulations, research, and tax codes to encourage more competition.
If we had more independant pasture hog producers these CFO would be scared. They couldn't compete.
Their cost of productions look pathetic to me.
> Dear Readers:
> I would like to draw your attention to the article "Big hog farms help the
> environment" by Dennis Avery, Des Moines Sunday Register, December 7, 1997.
> Mr. Avery expresses his opinion about big hog farms being good for the
> environment and Midwest communities.
> Heidi Carter
> Heidi Carter E-Mail: email@example.com
> Education Coordinator Phone: 402-472-0917
> Center for Sustainable Agricultural Systems
> University of Nebraska-Lincoln
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