IFA Pigs Chairman Tom Hogan has called on factories to implement similar price increases to those seen across Europe in recent weeks. He said that given the recent dramatic improvement in market conditions, factories must now do the right thing and pass this on to farmers, who have been haemorrhaging money over the past number of months.
“Across the EU there have been dramatic price increases since January. Countries with a similar producing and export profile to Ireland have experienced price increases of 25-30%. Demand from Chinese buyers has been strong in recent weeks, due to a shortage of domestic pork production,” he said.
IFA held a crisis pig meeting of all farmers recently following the failure of the pig factories to adequately reflect the rising markets by returning much-improved pig prices.
Tom Hogan said, “Following this meeting, the IFA organised delegations of suppliers to meet their processors last week and demand a fully justified 10c/kg increase in the Irish pig price up to €1.60c/kg. Factories responded with a 4c/kg increase, which is not enough given the market conditions and export demand coming from buyers serving the Chinese market”.
Tom Hogan said, “Low pig prices combined with rising feed costs in 2018 resulted in the lowest margin in the last 20 years. Pig farmers are battered and bruised financially and mentally. They need to see the benefits of the improved market conditions immediately to begin the process of repaying the massive debt levels that has accumulated over the past 14 months.”