GB pig production costs remain above levels in other EU countries, despite a 6% fall in domestic costs in 2015, according to AHDB Pork.
While average pig production costs in Great Britain fell to £1.33/kg last year, the latest analysis of pig production costs from InterPIG, an international group of pig economists, showed average EU costs falling to £1.18/kg.
The lowest costs were again in Denmark and Spain, at £1.06/kg, while only Italy had higher average costs than GB in 2015.
“The decline in production costs was mainly due to cheaper feed,” said AHDB Pork. “Despite this, falling pig prices meant that production costs remained above pig prices across all the main EU producing countries. Indeed, the above average pig price in Great Britain meant that producer margins were better than in most other EU countries.”
The InterPIG analysis also showed that productivity improved across the EU at a similar rate to that in Great Britain. As a result, the GB average of 24.4 pigs weaned per sow per year remained well below the EU average of 26.8, never mind Denmark’s 31.3.
“Even the UK’s indoor sows only managed a below average 26.0 pigs weaned per year,” said AHDB Pork. “As in previous years, the main reason for the relatively low UK figure was smaller litter sizes; GB litters averaged 12.3 born alive (12.8 indoors), compared with an EU average of 13.5.”