Major Profits Being Made by Processors While Pig Producers Suffer Cuts

IFA National Pigs and Pigment Committee Chairman Tim Cullinan said the completely unjustified price drop suffered by producers supplying Ireland’s largest factory was not reversed this week despite strong market conditions prevailing.

The IFA Pigs Chairman said, “A large secondary processor in Ireland who is supplying both Irish and imported meat into the majority of Irish multiples posted profits of over €3m for last year. This was the worst year in living memory for producers, with record high feed prices which left pig farmers in a serious loss-making situation. While producers were suffering these losses, factories and processors were obviously creaming off massive profits.”

“Pig farmers have been under enormous pressure over the last 18 months and it is testament to the efficiency of these producers that they have been able to survive at all. Factories cannot continue to profiteer at the expense of producers and expect them to continue to carry the industry.”

Mr. Cullinan said, “The IFA National Pigs and Pigmeat Committee have worked very hard to secure growing market share on Irish retail shelves for Quality Assured pigmeat. This was achieved through constant negotiations, action in the stores and promotional activity. The DNA scheme is almost at the point of validation and by Christmas will be fully in use identifying any link in the chain that is misleading consumers on the provenance of their pigmeat.”

“Processors have indicated that even though export growth in first six months of the year was really positive, the second half of the year is expected to be even more positive.  In the last week one of the major multiples assured an IFA delegation that 100% of their pigmeat is now Irish. This is a tonnage off over 100k kilos per week. All of these retail contracts are worth a lot of money to Irish processors. The market is positive internally and externally and this must be reflected in pig prices,” Mr Cullinan concluded.

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