Fun, isn’t it?

The regulatory state in inaction:

Pig farmers have threatened to slaughter animals on their land for render because of a growing backlog at abattoirs and processing plants due to the CO2 shortage.

Plenty of pigs, plenty of pig meat. But the regulations say that for human consumption only abattoir slaughtered may be used. Therefore there will be shortages of pigmeat because of the regulations.

If the backlog gets any bigger, pigs will have to be slaughtered on the farm and cannot then be put into the food chain.

15 thoughts on “Fun, isn’t it?”

  1. I’m still struggling with the logic of “there’s not enough CO₂ to kill your pigs so your pigs will have to be killed”. Also, WTF can’t they use nitrogen instead? That would stun the pigs with probably less distress than CO₂, and it’s 79% of the atmosphere so readily available.

  2. Arthur I agree.
    I’m not sure if the real problem is the lack of workers to slaughter the pigs in the abattoirs or regulation that abattoirs must slaughter ‘humanely’. If its the latter the fix is to allow them to kill the pigs the same way the farmers would anyway. If it is the former then possibly the fix is for the farmers to help – after-all its likely to be less hours than having to kill the pigs on their own farm and dispose of the bodies.

  3. So, there’s a CO2 shortage, because gas prices are too high. The obvious solution is that the price of CO2 ought to rise until it is economical to make it again. But I hear no discussion of that. How much would the price of dead pig have to rise to make making CO2 viable again, given current gas prices?

  4. William

    “So, there’s a CO2 shortage, because gas prices are too high.”

    Why are gas prices too high. Wouldn’t (partially) be carbon taxes and other regulatory crap that artificially promotes bird slicers over fracking and more efficient power stations by any chance?

  5. Bloke in North Korea (Germany province)

    Government minister: The CO2 price cap will remain in place until there are no more shortages so everyone can buy what they need at a fair market price.

  6. @WC

    As I understand it, the main problem is that CO2 is mainly produced as a byproduct of other processes which are uneconomic due to the high gas price. There’s no non-crazy price level of CO2 at which you’d run an ammonia plant just because you want to produce the CO2.

    Your question is a good one though. Presumably there is a (hopefully non-crazy) price of food-grade CO2 at which it becomes worth using some other process to produce it specifically, or to import it from elsewhere in the world (I know that the importation infrastructure has developed since our last shortage). But production issues seem global which doesn’t help on the import front, and I don’t know how food-grade CO2 is produced in a way that can be ramped up when you want more. (I know it’s also sourced from other chemical processes which are less affected by the high gas price, bioethanol production for example. But I don’t know if they can just collect more CO2 byproduct or they already collect as much as they can.)

  7. “There might be a slight problem with being an Islamic pig farmer.” We once met a Moslem lad who quizzed us about pigs. It transpired that he’d been watching some piglets in a sty near his place of work and thought them rather endearing. I considered treating him to Spinoza’s theory of pigophobia but thought better of it.

  8. @Arthur the cat

    In a world in which we are constantly told of how the media is falling apart – and indeed, the regional media seems to be a busted flush, in a way that could well be damaging to our local democracies – and newspapers and TV news seem to rely more upon opinion than fact, it’s reassuring that there corners of the media out there with titles like “gasworld dot com”. In fact the trade press is apparently in pretty good face, presumably because they can find willing albeit niche buyers who demand content about how their particular corner of the world actually is ticking along, in a way that is economically valuable for the business they’re trying to run.

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