EU pig meat production falls as average market price climbs

Data from the European Commission shows a drop in February 2022’s EU pig meat production figures, even though the average market price is climbing.

The EU produced 1.9 million tonnes of pig meat in February of this year: a 4% decrease compared to February 2021. For the first two months of 2022, the bloc produced 3.8 million tonnes of pig meat, which is also a decline on 2021’s figures, of 3% (-120kt).

2022 is also showing a 2% decline in the number of pigs slaughtered in the EU, compared to the first two months of 2021,with 40.5 million, even though the EU average market price is climbing.

In the EU group, German pig meat production dropped 11% (-96kt), for the largest decrease; Belgian production reduced by 8% (-15kt); and Italian production fell 7% (-17kt), as did Polish production (-24kt).

Spain’s production numbers continue to outscore the EU-group’s production trends. Spain’s production is growing year-on-year, with a 6% increase (+54kt) in the first two months of 2022.

EU pig slaughter

Regardless of Spain’s increase, the EU is forecasting an overall 3% fall in European pig meat production in 2022, due to the sector’s current lack of profitability.

Duncan Wyatt, AHDB’s red meat lead analyst, said that many European pig producers are facing higher costs for their inputs, and are in a situation very similar to that of UK producers. As such, European producers have also been asking their local retailers to put money into their pig prices.

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