Canada remains major global pork producer and exporter

The Canadian pig herd has seen continued stability over the past 12 months as it continues to be a major player in the global pig meat production and export markets.

Farmgate pig prices in Canada have been this year, likely influenced by strength in the US market, with prices at the end of February were CAD$2.34/kg (£1.37/kg) (Porc Qualité Québec), having been below CAD$1.70/kg  (£1/kg) at the end of 2021.

Statistics Canada published figures placing Canada’s national herd at 14.11m head on 1 January, recording an annual growth of 0.6%. Its breeding sow herd showed more modest growth at only 0.3%, to 1.24m head.

Table showing Canadian pig numbers

Canadian sows farrowed between July and December 2021 was at 1.25m, 1% down on the same period in 2020, and the number of pigs born was 16.86m, slightly down on the same period a year earlier.

Duncan Wyatt, lead analyst for red meat at AHDB saidthat Canadian pig production in 2022 is likely to be stable compared with 2021, as the USDA is forecasting at 2.15 million tonnes.

“Canada is a major global pork producer and exported,” said Mr Wyatt. “British and EU exporters face competition from Canadian pork when supplying Asian markets.

“It is also the second-largest supplier of pork to Mexico, and so developments in Canada matter for global pork markets, and by extension, the UK.”

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