More Cash for Pig Feed Price Campaign

UK - The British Pig Executive is to plough another 31.5 million into the campaign to get a better deal for Britain's pig farmers.
calendar icon 21 December 2007
clock icon 4 minute read

The money, which will be spent on the industry in the first quarter of next year, will be used in the campaign to have the rise in retail prices filter back down to the pig farmers.

The cash includes £800,000 from the Department of Environment Food and Rural Affairs to help farmers recover from the effects of the recent outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease.

The campaign, which is being co-ordinated with that of the National Pig Association (NPA), was launched last August in response to rocketing feed prices.

"Rises have got to reach the bottom of the chain or the industry will go into meltdown"
NPA and BPEX Chairman Stewart Houston

The extension of the campaign will be led by a series of high profile consumer advertisements in national newspapers, magazines and supplements.

It will be backed up by a media roadshow to go out across the country to gain more consumer support.

There will be a range of PR activities including a demonstration in Parliament Square and the presentation of a petition at 10 Downing Street.

An independent, analytical report highlighting the ongoing impact of high feed costs, is being produced in conjunction with a major feed company and a High Street bank. It will be briefed to politicians, the media, retailers and other sectors.

There will also be trade PR and media briefings to make sure the issue stays in the public eye.

Some of the Defra money is being spent on the recovery of vital export markets which were closed because of Food and Mouth Disease. The severe problems caused by our inability to export during the Autumn, shows just how important they are.

NPA and BPEX Chairman Stewart Houston has been in talks with the supermarkets individually and these are continuing with various degrees of success.

Mr Houston said: "There has been some movement in prices at retail level but this has not been widely reflected all the way down the supply chain to the producer.

"Rises have got to reach the bottom of the chain or the industry will go into meltdown. From a consumer perspective, we are not talking about huge rises.

"The whole aim of this latest phase is to step up the pressure at all levels. Producers need to see at least 130p per kilo to survive. At the current price of 110p they are losing more than £20 on every pig produced.

"Make no mistake, if a short-term view is taken and rises do not get passed down to producers then many will quit the industry and next year there simply won't be enough British pig meat to go round meaning prices will rise sharply - but it will be too late."

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