Although the weekly Deadweight Average Pig Price (DAPP) rose by a further 1% to 139.04p/kg this week, the trend was not followed in the spot market, writes FW commentator, Peter Crichton.

With the exception of Vion, which increased its price by 1p to 141p/kg, Cranswick, Tulip and Woodheads left their prices unchanged at between 141p/kg and 144p/kg.

With several abattoirs closed over the upcoming Easter Bank Holiday, slaughtering throughputs will drop, which has contributed to a temporary reduction in demand for slaughter pigs. But when normal working resumes prices are expected to move ahead again.

Spot bacon pigs were generally traded in the 145–150p/kg range according to specification and lighter cutter weights enjoyed modest premiums of 4–6p/kg above this.

The euro has also maintained its recent strength closing the week virtually unchanged, worth 88.22p.

As a result, UK cull sow quotes were also fully maintained with sellers of large loads able to negotiate prices of between 108–110p/kg on a delivered basis.

But pig producers are facing further financial challenges on the feed price front which this week saw ex-farm feed wheat quotes hit the £210/t mark, although these have drifted back to £204–206/t.

Unless the major GB wheat growing areas receive significant rainfall in the next few weeks cereal yields will fall putting further upward pressure on pig feed prices.

The latest Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) 30kg ex-farm weaner quote has continued its modest recovery and rose this week from £42.50/head to £43.24/head, but is still £4-6 per head below cost of production levels.