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AHDB Pork Weekly Export Bulletin

03 March 2015

BPEX Weekly Export Bulletin - 3 March 2015BPEX Weekly Export Bulletin - 3 March 2015

British Pig Executive Weekly Export Bulletin


Danish Crown swallows smaller rival Tican

Danish Crown is to buy Tican, securing the future of its smaller rival which has been looking for a buyer over the past year. They announced the deal as a merger on Tuesday, but Danish Crown is the larger company. "We have found a model that secures a future for Tican," Tican Chairman Jens Jorgen Henriksen said. Both companies generate most of their revenue outside Denmark and Britain is one of their most important markets. Danish farmers and meat producing firms have been hit by a Russian ban. Danish banks have also started to feel the impact in the form of bad loan charges. Jyske Bank on Tuesday warned that 1,700 farmers in Denmark were in serious financial trouble. The merger needs approval from the Danish competition authorities, which will take several months. (Source, Reuters)

Denmark reports increased breeding herd

As at 1 January 2015, Statistics Denmark reported a 2% increase in the total number of pig numbers, to 12.7 million head. The breeding herd increased by 1% on the year, with more in-pig sows, suggesting an increase in the number of young pigs can be expected in the next quarter. Piglet numbers were reported to be similar to last year in January. Weaners (under 50kg), though, were more abundant, at 5.7 million head, up 7% on the year. However, as slaughter pig numbers continue to fall, it is evident that the weaner export industry remains robust. (Source, Statistics Denmark, AHDB MI)


Fresh hams met were traded at rising prices in European markets this week while other cuts sold at similar prices to last week or, in some cases, traded at slightly higher prices. The picture was similar on the British bacon market; sales were reported as stable or slightly higher week-on-week. Trade from third-country markets continues to be reported as quiet in both Japan and China. (Source,


Accusations of discrimination

Dutch and Danish farmers have protested to the European Commission and the German cartel authority (Bundeskartellamt) accusing the Germans of discrimination for not accepting foreign pigs in the new welfare initiative Tierwohl. (Source, Boerderij Vandaag)

German pig market roughly balanced

After several weeks with low availability of slaughter pigs and increasing prices, the German pig market is starting to turn. Available numbers are still comparably low, but the price increased by €c7 per kg last week which resulted in significantly lower orders form slaughter facilities. In some regions, slaughter pig supplies even slightly exceeded demand. The market appears to be roughly balanced and, therefore, the recommended pig price remained unchanged at €1.47 per kg. (Source, AMI)


Russian ban

The regional pig meat committee in Brittany requested a lift of the ban on European pig meat imposed by Russia, the CRP complains about the French authorities not reacting quickly enough. Producers in Brittany also believe their situation is weakened by increasing pig meat production in Germany and Spain over recent years and a minimum price rise of €c20 per kg is needed in order to get back to a near normal situation.


A joint offer from Declomesnil and Sofiproteol (Avril group) was registered by the court on 18 February for the AIM plant in Ste Cécile (Manche). This offer would have maintained 118 posts out of a total 397. However, as the plant had ceased operating for weeks, Declomesnil withdrew its offer on 23 February.

JA and Lidl

The young farmers section of FNSEA (Jeunes Agriculteurs) decided to check the origin of ham and lardons Lidl were displaying on its first ever stand at the Porte de Versailles Paris Agricultural Show. Under pressure from the young farmers, Lidl had to remove all pork and pork products that were not clearly showing French origin. JA claims that 70% of charcuterie products sold in French supermarkets are not French and the proportion could reach 100% in hard discount stores.


Pigs: The increase in prices at pork butchers is accelerating in Europe. Last Wednesday in Germany, the increase was €c7. The trend was similar in all nearby countries: up €c6 in Belgium, up €c5 or €c6 in the Netherlands and up by €c4.5 cents in Spain. To note: the Danish base price is also increasing, up €c2.7. This upward movement is connected with lower supplies compared with January. In Germany, between 300,000 to 400,000 fewer pigs were sent for slaughter.

Piglets: The acceleration in the increase in prices for pork butchers has promoted an increase for European piglets. Prices increased last week in most of the major areas of production (Spain, Belgium, Netherlands, and Denmark).



Small rise of entire pig production

If we compare 2006 and 2014, the major rise in the production of young boars has taken place in the Netherlands (from 2 to 60%) and Belgium (from 2 to 38%). Excepting the UK (99%), Ireland and Spain (80%), the production of boars remains small in the EU: Italy, Austria 0%, Czech Republic 1%, Sweden 3%, Denmark 5%, Germany 8%, Poland 10% (declining). These numbers were reported by the coordinator of the EU working group Gé Backus at a recent conference in Germany. (Source, Porc Magazine)


FAO forecast to 2020

Food and Agriculture Organization forecasts for the development of agriculture and the pig industry in Ukraine display an optimistic picture up to the year 2020. The forecast predicts domestic production to increase by 14% with total consumption of pork increasing by 10%. Ukrainian pork exports could triple in volume over the period. (Source,


Joint pig-breeding venture with the USA

Belarus and the USA will discuss the possibility of a joint new pig-breeding venture with a nucleus breeding herd, according to Alexei Bogdanov, Head of Foreign Economic Activity Department of the Belarus Ministry for Agriculture. An official Belarussian delegation is visiting the USA at the moment looking for export opportunities, promotion of Belarussian goods in the market and attracting inward investment. (Source,


Cargill goes for group housing earlier than planned

The major US producer is now aiming to convert its pork production at its two abattoirs from sows housed in groups by the end of 2017. (Source, Boerderij Vandaag)

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