Bank Holiday – What Bank Holiday?

UK - The next of a series of normally dreaded short weeks had little effect on the pig market, providing further evidence that numbers are already on the tight side, and when normal working resumes we could see demand continue to exceed supply, writes Peter Crichton in his Traffic Lights commentary for 30 April.
calendar icon 4 May 2010
clock icon 3 minute read

The DAPP also continues on its welcome but steady upward track and is now at 143.93p and the Tulip base price also put on a welcome penny to stand at 145p.

Before we get too carried away however, a glance in the diary reveals that a year ago the DAPP was 149.65p and the spot base price was 154p, almost 10p up on where it is today.

Although the euro has wobbled due to concerns over the financial plight of some of the southern Mediterranean European Union member countries it closed on Friday worth 86.8p, but this is 3 percent down on its value in early May 2009.

With pig numbers in almost perfect balance, spot sellers were able to command prices in the 143p region and this sector is still lagging behind most equivalent contract prices, which after premiums are working out between 145p–149p.

But much lower European Union pigmeat prices continue to pose a potent threat to the domestic market with European Union sellers receiving almost 30p/kg less for their pigs than we do.

Any further fall in the value of the euro will make the British pigmeat market even more vulnerable to imports and could put a lid on any hopes of further price rises this side of September.

Another ready indicator of the state of the European Union pigmeat market is provided by cull sow quotes which remain under pressure with only with only hard-nosed sellers with larger loads available able to obtain bids of 100p with quotes for smaller loads according to specification circa 98p.

The recent rises in weaner prices appears to have leveled out with the AHDB 30kg ex-farm average remaining static (but firm) at £54.40/head.

Once again however, the whole weaner sector remains a seller’s market and there are significant premiums available for larger numbers on a contract basis.

This time next week we will know the outcome of the general election and whether or not we have a “well hung” Parliament, although some might be tempted to add perhaps they should all be well and truly hung.

If however the boys in blue win the election, although this might provide positive signals for the future of the national economy, any increases in the value of the pound would do nothing to help the import/export balance of the United Kingdom pig industry.

So a few votes for the Raving Loony Party (remember them?) might help.

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