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Photo of Danish focus on live exports expanded in 2014

Bethan Wilkins

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AHDB Pork Market Intelligence

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Danish focus on live exports expanded in 2014

Home \ Prices & Stats \ News \ 2015 \ March \ Danish focus on live exports expanded in 2014

In 2014, Denmark exported 1% more pork but for a lower value than the year before, while live pig exports (mainly weaners) rose by 14%.

In 2014, Denmark exported 1.09 million tonnes of fresh and frozen pork but for a lower value than the year before of DKK18.1 billion (€2.4 billion). This volume was up almost 1% on 2013 but remained 1% below 2012 exports. Inter-EU trade dominated the market and expanded by around 2% on the year. This was driven by a similar increase to the primary partner, Germany, which took 347,000 tonnes over the year. Exports to Poland continued to decline year on year, as they are increasingly replaced by movement of live pigs (see below). The UK imported almost 16% more Danish pork, as unit prices dropped 4%. Non-EU trading showed a 3% decrease overall, as the impact of the Russian ban materialised (in 2013 Russia took 7% of exports). However, many other major non-EU countries received more Danish pork. Japan, in particular, imported 12% more to satisfy demand as its own production was hindered by disease. Australia also increased the volume of pork by 64% to become the sixth largest importer of Danish pork. Exports to China were down 4% but shipments of offal did increase on the year.

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The Danish industry continues to increase its focus on the export of weaners for cheaper finishing in neighbouring EU countries, as well as some finished pigs for processing elsewhere. Germany continued to be the recipient of the majority of Denmark’s live exports, almost 7 million head in 2014, up 5% on the year. However, Poland remained the main growth market and took a third more weaners on the year. The price of these live exports was down on the year by 7%, reflecting the trend in finished pig prices across the continent and highlighting the subsequent uncertainty in weaner markets.