US Breeding Herd Recovers - Cautious Uptrend (July 2011)

by 5m Editor
22 July 2011, at 12:00am

By Chris Harris, Editor-in-Chief of ThePigSite. Our snapshot of the ongoing global pig industry trends as reported in the July 2011 Whole Hog Brief. To read the full detailed analysis, including all the commentary and graphical data, subscribe to the publication.

Statistics from the US show that the pig herd is on the road to recovery, according to the latest issue of the Whole Hog.

The Whole Hog says that the quarterly census shows a consistent pattern of small but significant movement.

The last census shows an increase of 0.5 per cent in total pig numbers and 0.3 per cent in the breeding herd.

In Germany, the pig industry is relying more and more on live pig imports.

The latest figures from the Federal Statistical Office show that the breeding herd fell by 2.4 per cent according to the May census.

However, the Whole Hog reports that piglet numbers are up by six per cent and the total number of pigs has risen by 0.6 per cent year-on-year.

The pig herd in Germany was 26.7 million in the May census.

FAO Sees Restrained Global Supply of Pig Meat

The Whole Hog reports that the FAO's Food Outlook provides a gloomy view of the meat industry.

It says that low margins and record meat prices as well as a series of natural disasters have all hit global pig meat production.

The FAO figures show that production is expected to be 110 million tonnes of pig meat this year – a drop of 0.7 per cent on 2010.

However, the FAO's meat price index hit a new high in May, with especially large gains in pig meat prices.

The FAO analysts are forecasting that global pig meat trade will be around 6.4 million tonnes this year, five per cent up on 2010.

The Whole Hog's Global Pig Price Index has flown through the previous peak and hit a new record high for the millennium.

The price index has reached the heights of 1997 and the Whole Hog says that there are no signs of the rise in prices slowing.

In Europe, pig prices have levelled off and have not been affected by the summer barbecue season.

The Euro-zone average pig meat price was 155.56 per 100 kg.

Steady as She Goes for Canadian Exports

The first four months of the year show stable pork exports up by about two per cent.

The Whole Hog says that total sales were 373,482 tonnes.

However, US exports have made significant gains with a double-digit rise for the first four months of the year.

Total sales were up by 18.2 per cent year on year and the April exports of pig meat and variety meat was up by 17 per cent.

In Australia, the drop in pig meat imports has continued, but the Whole Hog says that the recovery in exports has faltered.

In April, exports were down by 3.5 per cent and imports were down by 5.7 per cent. However, the trend in exports is up by 5.8 per cent and the trend in imports is down by five per cent.

Japanese imports of pig meat continue to show strong growth in the aftermath of the tsunami – up by 9.1 per cent in the first quarter of the year.

US exports to Japan in March were up by 11.6 per cent and imports from Canada were up by three per cent.

South Korea is also showing continued growth in imports from US and Canada in the wake of the Foot and Mouth Disease outbreak.

Imports from the US grew by 107 per cent increase since the beginning of the year.

There has been an overall increase of 66 per cent in pig meat imports this year.