PRODUCERS AND processors are reflecting on another indifferent 12 months, as 2004 comes to a close

The GB Euro Deadweight Adjusted Pig Price (DAPP) was 99.92p for pigs traded the week commencing Dec 13. 

It is unlikely to change significantly before the end of December, and has varied by only 1p over the past 13 weeks.

This price compares with a DAPP index price of 103.54p at the end of last year.

Weaner prices are also significantly easier, with the Meat and Livestock Commission 30kg weaner average of £30.94 down £1.80/head on the December 2003 figure.

Soya values have eased significantly with quotes of £135-138/t, representing a saving of £60/t over the 12 month period.

Producers can see signs of a brighter year ahead, as EU pigmeat values have surged 20% to 96p/kg in the past 12 months.

Although UK pigmeat imports rose by 5% in the first nine months of 2004, rising EU prices will help to stabilise UK producers‘ returns.

MLC figures show that pigmeat imports from Denmark alone rose by 10,000t over this period. Holland also increased their share of the UK bacon market by 53%.

There is a distinct feeling within the trade that there is no significant backlog of pigs waiting to hit the market which should help to avoid the usual Christmas and New Year price drop.