Danish farmers aim high at the Herning Congress

I was in Denmark last week – to be precise I was in Jutland in the small town of Herning. The conference centre there is the venue for a gathering of Danish pig farmers who are treated to a packed programme of experts and speakers who  inform them of; what has been happening in technology and pig production policies, about best practice on the farm, and where the industry needs to focus if it is to remain competitive in the years ahead. So it was that I mixed with +2000 pig farmers and their employees (almost half of the sector) at the Herning Congress for two days. There wasn’t a BBQ to be seen but the hot dog stands (courtesy of Tican and Danish Crown) Continue reading

EU welfare rules give Hercule Poirot a challenge

How easy is it to get the wrong end of the stick? Very, especially if you listen to some people.  Some of the comments that have been thrown around in the media in recent weeks about EU welfare rules provide a salutary lesson for the year’s end.

The BBC’s flagship radio farming programme broadcast the view (21 December) that, “nearly half of EU member states will be producing illegal pork from the start of January.” This view followed the press release a day earlier by the UK’s National Pig Association (NPA) that, “Around 40,000 ‘illegal’ pigs an hour will be entering Continue reading

No Santa rally for EU’s pig prices – or 2013 shortage

In the run up to Christmas all livestock producers hope to get something extra from the market. In Europe there seems no hope of any such bonus this year. Pig prices have been weakening for the last month and look set to enter the holiday season on a falling trend. The price data for November and December offer no early Christmas presents for farmers: no Santa rally is evident anywhere – not even in Lapland.

There is more detail on these prices in the latest issue of Whole Hog Brief and it seems that Continue reading

EU welfare rules create confusion for forecasters

October 2012

The October issue of Whole Hog gives a focus to the reports from various EU member states about the newsow stalls welfare rules and how they will affect sow numbers in 2013. The only thing that is clear is that it’s not clear…..The impact of recent the feed price hikes is also an issue.  The US hog census results are discussed in the issue and it seems too soon to call a sow cutback.  The EU’s latest Outlook report does, however, predict a fall in pork exports in 2013 and this is described in the issue.   Pig prices in Europe seem to have hit a plateau after recent record hikes.

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