Canadian Herd Shrinks but More Slowly (September 2009)

By Chris Harris, Senior Editor, ThePigSite. Our snapshot of the ongoing global pig industry trends as reported in September 2009 Whole Hog Brief. To read the full detailed analysis including all the commentary and graphical data, subscribe to the publication.
calendar icon 10 September 2009
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The Canadian breeding herd is still contracting, although the contraction is slowing down, according to the latest Whole Hog Brief.

Whole Hog Brief reports the Statistics Canada figures as 12.1 million pigs on farms in the July census down by 875,000 – 6.7 per cent – on the same month a year ago.

The breeding herd was 1.38 million down by 4.6 per cent on the second quarter of 2008.

Market pig numbers fell by seven per cent on last year but were up on the previous quarter by 2.1 per cent.

Brazil has seen an increase in exports in value but a drop in volume according to the Whole Hog Brief.

Total Brazilian pig meat exports were 529,418 tonnes last year, 12.7 per cent down on 2007. The value however, reached $1.48 billion up by 20 per cent.

The drop in volume has been put down to an increased domestic demand, Whole Hog Brief says.

Pig Price Cycle Loses a Wheel

Pig prices for the three major exporting countries - US, Canada and Denmark - have taken a sharp downward turn.

Whole Hog Brief predicted the fall in the last issue and it now reports that "prices have fallen off a cliff", falling at weekly rates of 1.1 per cent, 1.5 per cent and 1.9 per cent.

Whole Hog Brief says that the US and Canadian pig prices seem to be in freefall.

German Pig Numbers go against EU Trend

He official figures from Germany show that pig numbers have risen in the country by 0.6 per cent to 26.9 million.

However, the breeding herd was down by 2.6 per cent to 2.3 million compared to 2008 figures.

EU producer prices continued their downward trend in August, Whole Hog Brief reports.

The average price was €155.72 per 100kg. Spanish and German prices were above the average at €165.9 and €160.1, but the Danish prices were way below the average at €132.01.

Canadian Exports Drop Back Slightly

Canadian pig meat exports for January to June this year fell back by 3.5 per cent to 517,469 tonnes.

Whole Hog Brief reports that the decline is seen in a drop off in exports to China by more than 43 per cent and Hong Kong by 38 per cent. Russia and Mexico also imported less Canadian pig meat.

Imports into Canada were also down – by 1.5 per cent.

US exports are also declining sharply reaching 127,686 tonnes in June, a decline of 31 per cent on 2008 and 7.4 per cent on the previous month.

The US did see a rise in exports to Mexico of 12.4 per cent in June over the May figures.

Australian Pig Meat Exports Plunge

Australian exports fell sharply in May by 18.4 per cent year on year.

Meanwhile, imports rose by 23.8 per cent with the main sources being Canada, USA and Denmark, according to Whole Hog Brief.

Japan is cutting back its imports and in May they fell by eight per cent on the year to date and against May last year imports were down by 18.2 per cent.

South Korea has also shown about an 18 per cent drop in imports in June this year compared to the same period in 2007. The main markets being hit by the drop are the US, Chile and Denmark, while Canada reported an increase in exports to Korea.

September 2009

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