It’s Getting Better

Pig prices are continuing their relatively bullish mode with the latest German producer price up by 30 euro Cents to €1.76, which in LSD money works out at 152p/kg and is over 10p/kg ahead of the current SPP which rose by 1.84p to 141.68p.

Although it is still a case of “mind the gap”, on this occasion we are on the wrong side of the tracks when compared with our EU counterparts and it will take a while before the SPP makes any significant upward progress due to its “self- feeding” nature and with signs that this week’s weekly contribution prices will only have gone up by a smaller margin than seven days ago this will keep the progress of the SPP in first gear for a little longer, but at least it is heading in the right direction.

Weekly contribution prices have in some cases stood on or gone up a touch, with most between 134p and 140p/kg.

The spot market is either hot or cold, but at the moment it is warming up nicely with most spot pig trades on the top side of 150p/kg for very small numbers of pigs with the majority being sold on contract where prices are now lagging behind, although at the start of the year spot bacon was trading around 138p/kg and is up by between 15p and 17p/kg since then, i.e. around £12 per pig.

Cull sow prices are also continuing to move ahead going up another useful 4p/kg rise this week, with export abattoir bids mainly in the 92-97p/kg range, also helped by a firmer Euro which traded today with 86.31p compared with 85.83p a week ago.

In round terms cull sow quotes have risen by 37p/kg since the start of the year, which is equivalent to approximately £52 per sow, but still have a way to go before a cull sow can pay for a replacement gilt.

The weaner market remains in a better state of health than it was a few months ago with the latest AHDB 7 kg ex farm average quoted at £35.30/head and 30kg at £45.59/head, but in both cases significant premiums are available for one off loads of RSPCA Assured stock. But with only £10 difference between 7kg piglets and 30kg weaners better margins can currently be earned by breeders selling at 7kg rather than 30kg, because rearing costs over this weight range work out at significantly more than £10 per pig.

Grain values have remained at manageable levels with futures prices of £163/t for feed wheat in June 2019 and an even more attractive £143/t for September 2019.

Barley looks even better value at a £135/t for June 2019 and £130/t for September 2019.
For those who use them, wheat feed (mids) were traded at £118/t for the June-September 2019.

Protein prices are also looking affordable with Hi pro soya meal traded at £275/t for June-October 2019 and a slightly firmer £283/t for November 2019-April2020. Rape meal for June-July 2019 delivery is £187/t.

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About The Author

Based in Suffolk, Peter Crichton provides a wide range of valuation, auction and livestock marketing services, as well as supplying the UK pig industry with a wide range of consultancy services covering tenancy, contract advice, pig equipment and herd valuations as well as dispute resolution. For more information visit: