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Supermarkets Lead the Field

by 5m Editor
13 March 2010, at 9:34am

UK - Earlier reports of a shortage of weaners in the system are starting to be felt in the finished pig market where numbers continue to tighten at a time of year when demand normally improves, writes Peter Crichton in his Trsffic Lights commentary.

The DAPP continues to nudge ahead and now stands at 141.63p (compared with 140.61p a year ago) with spot quotes at almost exactly identical levels.

Although there are still reports of rather indifferent demand for both pigmeat and beef in the fresh meat sector, the big supermarkets and their processor suppliers are leading the field and as a result very few spot buyers who offered below 140p were able to find sellers who said “I do“ with the usual modest premiums of 4–8p for gilts and lighter weights.

Uncertainty in the currency markets about the post general election period is continuing to put the pound under pressure to the benefit of the pig industry and the euro ended the week worth 90.6p, which is just a shade up on its value a week ago.

Unfortunately on this occasion a stronger euro has failed to have much effect on the cull sow market with reports that German prices have dropped by 4 percent this week. Despite this most United Kingdom cull sow export abattoirs were trading anywhere between a hesitant stand on and 1p off in places.

Cull sow quotes on a delivered basis tended to be in the 102–104p range; although buyers would prefer to be able to buy sows at less than 100p to match European Union values.

As commented earlier the weaner market continues to point the way as far as pig availability is concerned and the AHDB 30kg ex-farm weaner average has continued to move ahead and now stands at 352.76/head with premiums of 31/ 32 available for bigger lots, but most buyers are now insisting that piglets (rather than sows) are PCV2 vaccinated.

The cereal sector remains a buyer’s market with ex-farm feed wheat quoted for current delivery at just under 390/tonne and reports are still being received of relatively high on farm grain stocks, which should help to keep a lid on prices in the weeks ahead, especially when space has to be made for the 2010 harvest.

Ps. Thanks to those of you who decided to wet their whistle at the Ampton Point-to-Point and my apologies for one of my tips which started at 10-1, but finished at 4.45 (geddit?).