Better Prices are Coming... but We're Still Waiting

by 5m Editor
14 March 2011, at 8:48am

UK - Although almost everyone is predicting that pig prices will rise, it is more of a question of when rather than if.

The DAPP has risen from 134.7p to 134.89p, but the big four all kept the squeak prices at similar levels with Vion very much in the rear at 133p and Woodheads still leading the field at 139p.

Spot buyers tended to be slightly more active this week and although the pig numbers are continuing to tighten, what we really need is for retail demand to improve.

All the signs are that retail trade is still slow mainly due to consumers penny pinching when buying food, although alongside lamb and beef, pork still looks an absolute bargain.

Spot bacon quotes today tended to be in the 130p region with one or two buyers prepared to spend a shade more to get the numbers they needed and some of the lighter fresh meat buyers were also a little more active than they have been recently with premiums of 4p–8p above this for cutters.

The relative strength of the euro has closed the week worth 86.45p which was another positive factor working in our favour as far as the pigmeat import-export balance is concerned.

The cull sow market continues to improve reflecting better manufacturing pigmeat prices in Europe and skilled sellers were able to obtain bids of up to 100p/kg for large loads on a delivered basis, but run of the mill quotes tended to be around the 96p–98p mark delivered.

Weaner supplies have continued to tighten and recent reports of lower cereal futures prices have helped to inject a little more confidence into this sector of the market.

The latest Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board30kg ex-farm average is quoted at 340.79/head and with one or two more contracts being signed surplus spot weaners could be harder to find in the weeks ahead.

Demand for 7kg weaners remains slightly more fickle as these tend to eat much more food than their 30kg counterparts with reports of some spot loads being sold anywhere of between 324- 328/head, but numbers are also starting to tighten.

The drinks and slow horses are on me... bring your own fast women

PS. For those of you who like standing in muddy fields and watching your hopes and fivers hit the deck, I am sponsoring a race at Ampton (near Bury St Edmunds) Point-to-Point meeting this Sunday 13 March and all clients, customers and rivals are welcome to enjoy (?) some (rare) Crichton hospitality in The Master's Marquee from around 1.30pm onwards. Good luck, but remember the downfall of many a good man has been slow horses and fast women!