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Pig Trade & Prices

Pig Trade & Prices


Prices: The average price paid for grade E pig prices in Ireland for the week ending January 8th, 2022 remained at €1.43/kg. Irish prices currently sit 11c/kg above the EU Grade E price, which sits at €1.32/kg. It has been a challenging year for Irish pig farmers with higher feed costs and lower prices compared to previous years. 

Throughput: A total of 56,113 pigs were sent for processing in Irish export plants during the week ending January 9th, 2022. This shows a decrease of 19,559 pigs (-26%) on the week previous, and 15,778 head on the first week of 2021 (-22%).

Grade E pig price week ending January 1st, 2022: 1.43/kg

China’s live hog prices: Prices have declined this week, decreasing 11.5% to 14.51CNY/kg. Furthermore, prices have declined 20% since the middle of December.

Hog prices have fluctuated quite a lot to begin the year but have shown a consistent downward trend as a whole. Pork consumption was up in preparation for the New Year’s Day holiday but has declined steadily since then. Slaughterhouses have since shown a weakened demand for hogs due to the decrease of orders. As a result, hog prices have dropped. In addition, the resurgence of COVID-19 in Shaanxi and Henan provinces made hog trading uncertain. A couple cities are now under lockdown which has disrupted trade and this has led to reduced confidence in the market.

In review of 2021, prices have fallen from 36.08CNY/kg on this day last year. This has been viewed domestically as a return to normality following the ASF outbreak and the much higher prices which accompanied that. From a macro view, China saw a much quicker recovery in domestic pig production capacity in 2021. The stock of hogs has returned to a level very close to where it was before the outbreak of ASF. There has been no shortage of pork supply so hog prices have fallen from that higher level and experienced a large overall decline for the year.       

Market Update: China  have raised import tariffs on most pork products amid the sharp increase in domestic production. Tariffs for most favoured nations, including the U.S., returned to 12% on Jan. 1, from 8% currently, according to a ministry statement. China lowered its tariffs on frozen pork in 2020 from 12% to 8% as the country faced soaring domestic meat prices.

Imports surged to a record high and remained at high levels through the first half of the year, even as the hog herd recovered and prices fell below production cost by the third quarter.

"Adjusting rates in a timely manner can help secure supplies and stabilize prices in the domestic market by reasonably using the international market," said Zhu Zengyong, researcher with the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences.

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