UK pig meat exports fall to lowest level since January

UK pig meat exports (including offal) in September dropped back to the lowest level since January, at 24,900 tonnes, according to the AHDB.

Volumes of exported fresh/frozen pork totalled 14,200 tonnes, nearly 40% behind year earlier levels, with 45% decline in exports to China only partially explaining the drop

AHDB analyst Bethan Wilkins attributed the fall to a decline in shipments to a range of other markets, particularly within the EU. She said: “Plentiful supplies within Europe have likely decreased demand for UK exports, particularly with UK pig prices tracking well above their EU counterpart.

September offal exports fared better, coming in at 8,600 tonnes. Although this marks lowest volume since January, this was 14% above the level last year. The increase was primarily due to larger shipments to EU member states (+31% to 3,200 tonnes), notably the Netherlands and Belgium, despite lower shipments to China, which fell 7% on September 2020 at 3,700 tonnes.

Table of UK pig meat trade in September 2021

UK imports of pig meat products remained subdued in Setember, continuing the trend seen throughout 2021. Only bacon volumes showed an increase compared to year-earlier levels.

Commenting on the state of UK pig meat imports, Ms Wilkins added: “Supplies have been plentiful across the EU, but it seems the UK market has been relatively resistant to the product on offer there.

“Volumes were down from most of the UK’s major suppliers. Belgium, though generally a smaller supplier, was the exception with volumes shipped totalling 4,400 tonnes, nearly three-times the level last September. This growth came from sausages, and to a lesser extent fresh pork.”

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