Price Increase Needed for Pig Producers

IFA National Pig Committee Chair Roy Gallie is calling for further rises in the pig price paid to producers given the scarcity of pigs in the marketplace.

“Prices in other European countries are still rising, but Ireland has not had a rise in the pig price since April. The average pig farm’s accumulated losses are in excess of €500,000 from late 2021 to early 2023 and it will take a sustained period of time operating at a profitable margin to recover,” he said.

IFA National Pig Committee members have been engaging with retailers, processors and secondary processors on pig price and Roy Gallie is calling on pig producers to do the same with their factory. The average Irish price is €2.34/kg. 

“There is ample justification this week for a further increase for the pig price.  It is only possible for producers to recoup their losses within this calendar year if there is another substantial increase in the pig price of 10c/kg,” he said.  

The European pig herd has one million fewer sows in the main pig producing member states, from the period January to March 2023 vs the same period in 2022. Overall EU slaughter figures are back 7.7% or 4.77M pigs.

Denmark is back 16.3%, Germany back 8.0%, Spain is back 9% and in Ireland we are back 11% year to date on fattening slaughter figures with a further 2% drop already in the pipeline. This trend will continue if pig producers do not receive the market price for pigs that is available in other European countries. 

“This tightening in supplies is reflected by increased pig prices available to producers across Europe with further rises given for last week’s pigs including a rise of 5c/kg for German pig producers, bringing their average price to €2.43/kg. UK Red tractor pigs from this island are fetching close to €2.60/kg from the UK market,” Roy Gallie concluded.

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