Pigmeat prices still suffering effects of foot-and-mouth

The UK pigmeat market continues to be overshadowed by the backlog caused by the recent foot-and-mouth crisis and concerns over sharply rising feed prices.

Although average deadweight prices have held up reasonably well at 109.1p/kg, spot prices are continuing to decline with very little spare space available.

Meat traders are reporting that they expect better overall demand towards the end of September which should help to halt the slide in values, but until then there are no real prospects of any significant recovery.

Imported pigmeat is however starting to edge up in value with the latest EU mainland average of 97.63p/kg up by just .6%.

The UK cull sow market is also heavily over-supplied due to uneconomic herds being culled and the fact that EU exports have only recommenced in the past seven days. As a result cull sow base prices remain at 60p/kg.

Meanwhile, weaner producers are also facing a lack of takers due to the high feed prices which has pushed down most 30kg weaner quotes to about £32/head – well below costs of production .

Unless there is a sharp upward movement in pigmeat prices this autumn to match sharply rising feed costs pig producers throughout the EU will continue to operate at a significant loss.