Ongoing challenges in the pork industry, financial losses, and uncertainty in the hog and pork markets led to the decision.
Olymel announcing the closure of five sow units in Alberta (Smoky Sow/Dev, Pinnacle 1, Pinnacle 2, Dynacrest 1, and Dynacrest 2) and one in Saskatchewan (Kelsey) cutting about 17,000 sows from their operations.
Approximately 80 staff have been given their layoff notices, Olymel is working with those affected to find other positions within the company or placement outside the company.
Over the next few months, they will begin winding down operations at the barns which will remain shuttered until the market conditions improve.
The closures will result in a net reduction of about 200,000 company-owned market hogs annually to the Red Deer slaughter plant.
The full impact of the move will not be felt until 2024 at the earliest and will be subject to independent hog supply availability.
We'll have an update on the situation tomorrow with Olymel's Vice President of Swine Production for Western Canada Casey Smit.