Wednesday, 2 June 2021
By Bethan Wilkins
Pig prices in the EU have picked up again the past couple of weeks.
The latest average pig price, for the week ending 23 May, was €160.85/100kg. This was the highest level recorded since June last year.
The reopening of some foodservice elements has supported the price buoyancy as has demand from China. Live pig supplies are also reported to be limited in some member states, particularly Germany. More recently, there is some optimism for further demand growth within the EU as the better weather increases sales of grilling cuts.
All major producing member states have recorded positive price movements, though the degree of increase varies. The French price rose by €11/100kg in the four weeks to 23 May, while the Dutch price increased by just under €1/100kg in the same period.
In sterling terms, the EU pig price has also risen over recent weeks, and now stands at 138.49p/kg for week ending 23 May. This level was last recorded in July last year.
While both the EU and UK prices have improved over the past month overall, the UK price has done so at a greater rate. This has resulted in the UK price premium rising from 10p to 14p over the past four weeks, which is a fairly typical price differential.
It will be interesting to see how EU prices develop in the coming weeks. If UK prices continue to rise ahead of their EU counterparts, this might start to support demand for imported pork, which is expected anyway with the further reopening of the eating-out sector. Ultimately, this might limit price growth on the UK market.
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