The New Year has failed to trigger any upturn in fortunes for European pig producers, with prices averaging just over £100 per 100kg in the week ended January 11, according to BPEX.
With 2014 having been a year of “continual price drops” for EU producers, BPEX commented that the arrival of 2015 had “brought no change”, with the week to January 11 seeing prices £21 per 100 kg down on the starting point a year ago.
“Pressure has been kept on the market by disease issues, the Russian ban and, latterly, ample supplies,” said BPEX, adding that the downward price trend was seen across the board.
German prices, for example, ended 2014 at around £16.75 per 100kg lower than a year earlier, only to fall again as the New Year began. Danish, Belgian and Dutch prices have shown similar movements over the last 12 months.
Drawing a small positive from the 2014 story, BPEX added that the UK remains the “highest priced major producer” while also managing to retain its premium over the EU average.
BPEX also suggested that the UK/EU price gap might increase further following the weakening of the euro last week, after the Swiss Franc was decoupled from it.
“This could be enough to push the EU average price below £1/kg in sterling terms for the first time since early 2008,” said BPEX.