Peter Crichton’s commentary for October 18, 2013

Although the DAPP put on a further 0.2p and now stands at a new high of 171.69p, the Tulip weekly price remains unchanged at 168p and is now well adrift of other contract and spot prices.

Gills also stood on at 172p.

Spot buyers were, however, very active in the market with the result that prices were anywhere between a positive stand on and plus 1-2p/kg more in places with spot bacon traded in the 172-176p/kg range according to spec. More could easily have been sold.

Cull sow prices have continued to reflect generally more stable EU mainland pigmeat values with export buyers standing on and cull sows traded within a fairly wide range of between 115-120p/kg according to load size and specification.

The euro traded marginally easier at 84.5p on Friday compared with 85p a week ago.

Weaner prices also seem to have reached something of a plateau, with the latest AHDB 30kg ex-farm weaner average quoted at £54.13/head, while 7kg pigs were finding new homes at about the £35/head mark for Red Tractor and £40/head for Freedom Food pigs. 

On the negative side, feed prices are continuing to nudge ahead with ex-farm feed wheat traded at £155.70/t and futures quotes on the LIFFE market for November at £164/t, rising next July to £169.50/t.

And finally, signs are emerging following on from the horsemeat scandal earlier this year and the new pig breathalyser – known as isotope testing – that some of the major retailers are still looking for extra supplies of UK-sourced stock and it will not be long before processors start to look for extra numbers to cover the Christmas period, which may have the effect of tightening supplies still further in the run up to the end of the year.

This new Stable Isotope Ratio Analysis (SIRA) enables the country of origin of all pigmeat to be established and will greatly reduce those labelling mishaps which have occurred in the past. There’s also less of a risk that parts of Shergar will appear in a pork pie.

> Suffolk-based Peter Crichton is an auctioneer 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: www.petercrichton.co.uk

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