Spain: Hog Markets

by 5m Editor
2 May 2013, at 11:03am

SPAIN - If we had to summarize the situation of the market in Spain or in Europe it would be: scanty offer and scanty demand, writes Javier Santamartina - Spain, Italy & Portugal Genesus Representative.

If we analyze the offer, they are fewer pigs than in other years and prices are lower every week and lower than other years in the same week. This is the reason that the price is higher than in the last 5 years in this same week. Adaptation to animal welfare regulations and high feed prices in explains almost everything.

The price has remained stable over the last two months March and April and it will probably continue with this trend. It is expected that in summer there will be an increase in price, when pigs grow the slowest with the heat. There is an acceptable stock of frozen pork that could explain why there is no increase in price.

More confusing is the demand which has been lower. Different factors can explain why Spain in particular and the EU are in general is more dependent on exports.

  1. Internal demand is very weak in Spain. More than 6 million unemployed people have reduced demand of pork both fresh and processed. Also this reduction is more notable in higher priced cuts. In the European Union this trend is also the same with a reduction in price of ham in France, Italy and also Germany with increased consumption of cheaper cuts. In Northern Europe it has been raining and as a consequence the barbeque season has been delayed, so European consumers are not spending much on pork at this time.
  2. Export to other countries like China or Viet Nam has decreased their quotas and with less margins than previous years.
  3. Russia decided to stop the pork imports from Spain and from some German operators. The reason given by the Russian authorities is that there are some irregularities detected in the inspections by Russian technical personnel during the last month in Spain. It also affects some operators from Germany. This ban concerns Russia, Belorussia and Kazakhstan. Currently this has not caused too many problems to the meat that has been stored, the main concern is the sale of the lard that largely was going towards these countries.

After analyzing the mains factors of price, the other side of the business is the cost of production. Feed - don t expect big changes until harvest, especially for barley and wheat that have a strong position like corn that shows a decent trend in international markets.

We expect to have more stable prices this May with little adjustment and definitely better times in the summer.

European Markets and trends in last weeks.

Genesus Global Market Report
Prices for the week of April 22, 2013
CountryDomestic price
(own currency)
US dollars
(Liveweight a lb)
USA (Iowa-Minnesota) 84.50 USD/lb carcass 62.53¢
Canada (Ontario) 1.50 CAD/kg carcass 53.95¢
Mexico (DF) 19.03 MXN/kg liveweight 70.68¢
Brazil (South Region) 2.29 BRL/kg liveweight 51.84¢
Russia 68 RUB/kg liveweight 98.42¢
China 13.37 RMB/kg liveweight 98.36¢
Spain 1.370 EUR/kg liveweight 82.02¢
Viet Nam 38,000 VND/kg liveweight 82.78¢
South Korea 3,529 KRW/kg liveweight $1.45