Midland Pig Producers (MPP) has entered into a period of consultation with workers at two of its 10 farms about plans to close the sites due to the current state of the pig market in the UK.
“We can confirm that we have entered into a formal consultation period with staff regarding the potential closure of two of our pig breeding farms,” a spokesperson for the company said. “While regrettable, this aptly illustrates the current market for conscientiously produced British pork when faced with cheap imports from abroad.
Pictured above are MPP’s Trevor Digby (left) and Martin Barker
“Our plans to restructure our own pig production to create a sustainable model have been well publicised, and while the development of our purpose-designed farm has been delayed, it’s still our intention to pursue this course of action. Had our plans for this high-welfare farm at Foston, Derbyshire, already been approved, then it’s likely that these two older farms would have closed in order to relocate the stock and personnel to the new farm.
“However, we have brought forward the plan to close these farms before the new one is built in response to the state of the current pig and pork meat market in the UK.
“This position appears to be set for some time and closing these old units will help MPP focus on progressing its strategy for the future. We still firmly believe that the principles underpinning our Foston plans are the only way British pig farming will be sustainable in the future.
“Our remaining farms have implemented many of the principles of the Foston design with anaerobic digesters, freedom farrowing and air scrubbing in a high health environment but the two units being considered for closure are not suitable for this type of refurbishment and renovation.”
The two farms being considered for closure have about 1,200 sows between them and are located at Fradley, near Lichfield, and Foston, Derbyshire. Although all efforts will be made to relocate both personnel and sows at other farms, it’s likely that some jobs will be lost.