GB production costs still above average
Despite still having above average production costs, Great Britain was one of only two major producing countries in the EU where, on average, pig producers made money in 2014.
This is among the key conclusions of the latest analysis of pig production costs from InterPIG, an international group of pig economists. Despite this, GB costs remain around 5p/kg above the EU average, at an estimated 139p/kg in 2014. In most EU countries, sharply falling pig prices in the second half of the year meant that what had promised to be a good year for producers turned out not to be. The more favourable position of GB producers was because of the significant price premium which was apparent throughout the year.
Across all the countries covered by the report, production costs were significantly lower in 2014 than in the three previous years. On average, feed prices were down by 16% in sterling terms, with the fall in GB slightly larger than this. As a result, total production costs were 13% down on 2013 in both GB and across the EU. Declines were even sharper in North America, contributing to the improved margins there.
Since 2014, the financial position of producers has worsened across all of the countries covered. There have been no dramatic movements in feed prices since the start of 2015 but pig prices have declined sharply everywhere, meaning producers are likely to have lost money in most countries during 2015, with some making large losses.
Information on production costs and physical performance across the world’s major pig producing countries are analysed in more detail in the annual AHDB Pork report Pig Cost of Production in Selected Countries. The 2014 edition will be published soon on the AHDB Pork website.