Processors aiming for ‘full week’, despite coronavirus staff concerns

Most of the majors are planning a full week’s processing, albeit with some slack built into the plan to cope with staff absenteeism, according to Thames Valley Cambac’s latest market update.

Unsurprisingly, the market last week was dominated by the coronavirus outbreak, and the subsequent panic buying.

Contract price contributions generally stood on, and the SPP, which has been unusually stable in recent weeks, saw a welcome lift up 0.17p at 163.22p.

“Supply was seasonally tight, but some producers had the foresight to pull forward in advance of any disruption. Demand from the fresh meat sector was keen, fuelled no doubt by TV screens showing long queues and empty shelves,” TVC said.

Pork and cutter prices appreciated, with 2p to 3p rises commonplace, while the cull sow market was surprisingly buoyant, conquering volatile currency swings and poorer continental prices to register a 1p increase.

But iun Europe, prices continued to drift lower, with large falls registered in Holland and Germany. However, the falls were tempered in sterling terms by a stronger Euro that ended the week at a seven month high, up 1.96p at 91.03p.

The market remained ‘pretty fickle with very little trade seen outside regular contract movements’. AHDB prices saw the weighted average for a 7kg weaner fall by 60p to £42.25.

European Prices (p/kg.dwt) w/c 22/03/20    Movement on last week

European Av                           168.72             + 0.25

Belgium                                  153.66             – 0.17

Denmark                                 170.62             + 3.76

France                                     169.53             + 1.83

Germany                                 172.04             – 2.53

Ireland                                     172.95             + 3.72

Holland                                    163.71             – 5.25

Spain                                       178.51             + 0.37

(Ref Weekly Tribune)

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Editor of LBM titles Pig World and Farm Business and group editor of Agronomist and Arable Farmer. National Pig Association's webmaster. Previously political editor at Farmers Guardian for many years and also worked Farmers Weekly. Occasional farming media pundit. Brought up on a Leicestershire farm, now work from a shed in the garden in Oxfordshire. Big fan of Leicester City and Leicester Tigers. Occasional cricketer.