Pork imports threaten to kill off Scotland’s pig industry

SCOTLAND - The Scottish pig industry, whose standards of production and welfare are among the highest in the world, is in danger of collapse, with prices to farmers under increasing pressure.

Within the industry, supermarkets are perceived to be at the centre of a price war in which they can make a higher margin from imported pork.

Scottish consumers have been willing to pay a higher price for pork at 34.51 per kilo than the English average of 34.20 per kilo, but returns to producers have been meagre because they face tough competition from cheap imports. The latest ex-farm price is no more than 31 per kilo.

Last year total imports of pork into the UK amounted to 422,169 tonnes, compared to 383,383 tonnes in 2004 and 380,000 tonnes in 2003.

Most of the increase has come from Denmark, rising over the last two years from 130,211 tonnes in 2004 to 179,355 tonnes in 2005. This trend is likely to increase significantly in the current year. Scotland now has only one major pig processing centre at Broxburn in West Lothian.

Source: The Herald
calendar icon 2 March 2006
clock icon 2 minute read
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