Following several months of recovery, EU pig prices found stability in April after some improvement in prices early in the month, with a combination of limited slaughter and subdued demand causing prices to ease back, AHDB’s Bethan Wilkins reported.
Public holidays and coronavirus infections have both limited slaughter levels in Germany in particular, with poor weather also reportedly dampening demand, delaying the onset of the “barbeque season”.
The EU average price had been at the highest level since last July in mid-April, at €157.50/100kg. However, in the subsequent week ended 24 April the average dropped back to €156.48/100kg.
“The outlook remains cautious at present, and will depend on developments with the COVID-19 pandemic, the weather, and tourist trade,” Ms Wilkins noted.
The German market price was broadly stable in early April but fell sharply in the latest week. Meanwhile, the Spanish price rose sharply at the start of the month and has since increased more slowly.
The only other key market to show a declining trend over the past month was Poland. Prices have been rising noticeably in Denmark and France.
Weakening of the pound against the euro during April meant that in sterling terms, prices still rose overall, where the EU average price was 135.55p/kg in the final week of April
Ms Wilkins added: “Nonetheless, the gap between UK and EU prices has still increased slightly, as price growth here has been stronger. In the latest week the difference stood at about 10p/kg, although this is still a relatively small difference in historic terms.”