7% fall in number of sows in pig
IFA Pigs Committee Chairman Tom Hogan says the Irish pig price has fallen behind the price for the same week in 2016, which was a particularly difficult year for Irish pig farmers.
Some spot loads are making more than this week’s €1.58c/kg, and many farmers have successfully done deals for higher prices, said Mr Hogan, but no farmer is generating profit at current prices. He called on all stakeholders in the industry to be cognisant of the delicate financial position of Irish pig farms, and said pig farmers are also very worried by reports of pigmeat being included in the latest EU offer in Mercosur trade negotiations. Meanwhile, pig prices have continued to fall across the EU, led by a further fall in German prices last week of 3c, bringing to 20c their price fall over four weeks.
The CSO’s June 2017 Pig Survey has indicated that the total Irish pig herd fell more than 2%, to 1.56 million head. Numbers of finishing pigs were back 2%, while the breeding herd fell by almost 4% compared to 2016 (including a 7% fall in the number of sows in pig, and 8% fewer maiden gilts). This trend is likely to reduce sales of pigs later this year and in 2018.