UK production grows in July
At 891,200 head, UK clean pig slaughterings were up 6% year on year in July, once figures are adjusted for a change in methodology, according to latest figures from Defra.
However, this follows two months when slaughterings were lower than a year earlier. This amount of volatility is unusual and so the latest figures should be treated with some caution for the time being. Taking the last three months together, overall throughputs were only marginally up on the same period in 2015, which may be a more reliable indication of trends. The relatively tight supply situation this suggests matches recent industry reports and is consistent with the rising trend of pig prices throughout this period.
The new figures show a fall in sow slaughterings, compared with a year earlier, for the first time since last May. Throughputs totalled 18,600 head, 4% down on July 2015, perhaps indicating that rising pig prices have created a more optimistic climate for producers. Clean pig carcase weights remained above last year’s levels, averaging 80.6kg, 700g more than a year before. Added to the rise in slaughterings, this meant that pig meat production was reported to be up 7%, at 74,600 tonnes. As with the slaughtering figures, though, this should be treated with some caution; the rise over the last three months was a much more modest 1%.
Stephen Howarth, Market Specialist Manager
Stephen.email@example.com, 024 7647 8856