Copa-Cogeca Welcomes EC Pig Meat Storage Initiative

EU - Farmers' organisation, Copa-Cogeca, has welcomed the EU Commission's move to open private storage for pig meat.
calendar icon 27 January 2011
clock icon 3 minute read

On 24 January, a press release from Copa-Cogeca welcomed the EU move to open private storage aid for pig meat, claiming it will help improve the catastrophic situation facing EU pig meat producers.

Copa-Cogeca Secretary-General, Pekka Pesonen, said: "I am very pleased with EU Agriculture Commissioner Dacian Ciolos proposal. EU pig meat prices are currently at an all time low, as a result of the deep crisis that has been hitting the sector for the past three years. Market prices, which are 10 per cent below 2009 levels, are not enough to cover producers costs, resulting in losses of €25 per pig.

"Moreover, latest EU Commission forecasts show that the catastrophic situation will not get better in the months to come. I therefore welcome the decision to open private storage aid for pigmeat, which should help to rebalance the market situation. Refunds for EU pig meat exports also need to be activated once the stored meat is put back on the market, in order to prevent prices from dropping further."

The move was also welcomed by many EU Farm Ministers at their meeting today, and the Commission aims to implement it by the end of the week.

Copa-Cogeca called for this action in a meeting with EU Farm Ministers today, and it was reiterated by Copa-Cogeca member organisations in meetings with their national Ministers.

Mr Pesonen continued: "In the longer term, the EU needs to examine prospects for the sector and find solutions to ensure the future of the sector. I therefore welcome the EU Commission decision to set up an extended EU advisory group for EU stakeholders and policy makers.

"After all, EU pig meat producers currently get no direct support from the EU. Yet they are asked to comply with increasingly costly environmental and animal welfare requirements and obligations which imports do not have to meet. Growth hormones in pig production are also prohibited in the EU yet widely used in some other countries. This seriously erodes EU farmers competitivity.

"Moreover, 54 per cent of EU pig meat producers are solely dependent on pig meat production for their livelihoods. If no action is taken, more EU farms will go out of business and EU consumers will have to rely on imports which do not meet their requirements. The EU pig meat sector is also crucial to provide jobs in rural areas, with an estimated one in six jobs dependent upon agricultural production in the EU," concluded Mr Pesonen.

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