Déjà Vu for Canadian Pig Herd (September 2010)

By Chris Harris, Senior Editor, ThePigSite. Our snapshot of the ongoing global pig industry trends as reported in September 2010 Whole Hog Brief. To read the full detailed analysis including all the commentary and graphical data, subscribe to the publication.
calendar icon 17 September 2010
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The July census results from Statistics Canada show that the Canadian breeding herd and total pig numbers have fallen again.

The Whole Hog says that the scenario is exactly the same is it was for the spring census.

The latest figures show the breeding herd down to 1.3 million sows and gilts on the farm and the total number of hogs is 11.8 million. These are falls of 4.8 per cent and 2.4 per cent respectively on July 2009.

The Whole Hog says that the June report from the USDA shows that the total North American breeding herd is down by three per cent on 2009 at 7.09 million and the number of market hogs was also down by three per cent at 69.1 million.

The inventory for all hogs and pigs in June this year was 76.2 million.

The Canadian export data for the first six months of this year was six per cent up on 2009 according to the Whole Hog.

Although there were declines in exports to Australia, China, Taiwan and South Korea the markets to USA, Japan, Russia, Hong Kong and the Philippines were either stable or growing.

Meanwhile, the Whole Hog says that exports from the US are expected to soar this year.

It reports that the USDA Economic Research Service and Foreign Agricultural Service forecast is for exports to rise to 1.6 million tonnes next year and reach 1.5 million tonnes this year.

Exchange Rate Changes and Major Exporters' Prices

The Whole Hog's competitiveness studies have shown how exporters attempt to affect price, quality and timeliness through various factors – including production, processing, marketing and distribution efficiencies.

However, the Whole Hog adds that problems arise because of fluctuations in the exchange rates – something that cannot be controlled and which hampers international benchmarking.

The Whole Hog's Global Pig Price indicator is on the rise again as US pig prices start to move.

The report says that the US price movements are not unusual as big swings have been seen in US prices over the last decade.

The Whole Hog says that the volatility in the prices is expected to continue.

European pig prices are weak despite some signs of a recovery. In the Euro-zone, the average price is €150.59 per 100kg – a drop of three per cent year-on-year.

However, the Whole Hog says that Denmark's national costs and competitiveness with German packers has driven their prices up.

Across the EU, the Whole Hog reports that production figures for 2008 show a surplus of 1.8 million tonnes.

Australian Exports Recover in June

Australian purchases of pig meat from abroad levelled off in June, although the half-year trend for imports was up year-on-year.

At the same time, exports rose slightly in June but the half-year trend was down, the Whole Hog says.

The statistics for the first five months of the year show imports to Japan down by 0.2 per cent to 306,000 tonnes. However, imports of US pig meat were up in May but over the year, they showed a drop of 8.4 per cent.

The South Korean pork market has fallen back during the first seven months of the year. Imports were down by 1.4 per cent.

Chilean imports were up by six per cent.

September 2010

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