Stronger pound keeps pig values level

Pig traders are reporting signs of slightly tighter pig availability and better demand for week commencing Monday, 7 November.

The GB Euro Deadweight Adjusted Pig Price has remained almost static at 101.75p (compared with 100.3p a year ago).

EU pigmeat prices are also holding steady with mainland average prices virtually unchanged and equivalent to 88.6p/kg deadweight. 

After allowing for heavier carcass weights and lower bottom line deductions, EU prices are only around 5% lower than equivalent quotes in the UK.

The recent mild UK weather has also helped to boost growth rates with abattoirs reporting better numbers forward in recent weeks and higher probes.

With the onset of colder weather, supplies are likely to shorten at a time when retail demand is also improving.

As a result, spot bacon buyers were bidding in the 103–105p/kg range with some spaces still to fill at the end of the week, and lighter pigs worth 4-6p more than this.

Cull sow prices also took an upward step with export spec abattoirs quoting in the 75–77p/kg range according to region and specification.

But the rising value of the pound is making pigmeat imports into the UK cheaper. 

Traders hope that the euro, which opened on 7 November at 67.5p, will soon recover in value and reverse this trend.

Demand for weaners continues to ease with the Meat and Livestock Commission 30kg ex farm average quoted at £33.72/head.

Unless finished pig prices show signs of improving early next year weaner quotes are likely to remain at similar levels until after Christmas.