A reasonable first six months to 2017 for pig producers is forecast by AHDB Pork’s market specialist manager, Stephen Howarth, followed by price prospects looking a “little less positive” during the second half of the year.
Noting that much will depend on Brexit, what happens to the value of the pound this year and how the Chinese market develops, Mr Howarth warns that prices could come under a bit of pressure later in 2017.
“Into the second half of 2017, price prospects look a little less positive, especially if domestic demand remains a challenge,” he said. “Productivity gains are likely to mean pig numbers return to growth, both in the UK and on the continent, and China too may be producing more pigs again.
“This could put prices under a bit of pressure, although this could be mitigated if the pound does weaken further.
“Of course, currency will also have an impact on input costs, which could also affect the financial equation for producers.”