German pig herd falls – but the inventory rises

September 2012

The front page of the September issue deals with numbers arsing form the latest German pig herd census – sow numbers are down but the number of pigs is up: productivity and live pig imports explain this. The latest census results for the North American herd and the Canadian herd are also discussed in the issue and productivity seems to be rising in these countries too. The charts o the  Global Pig Price Index  illustrate  that the global pig price cycle is holding  up – Europe’s prices seem to be the key support.  Pig prices are flying off the charts in the EU and our charts show this clearly.

The news from the trade stats is gloomy. Canadian exports seem to be weak in some Asian markets  and the US pork exporters’ growth is now in value not volume. Australia’s pork exports are also faltering but imports falter even more in the latest data. The Japanese import market is no easy ride for any supplier and the contraction continues in the South Korean import trade.

The bankruptcies at Canada’s Puratone and Big Sky Farms dominate the Canadian headlines. The EU’s pig census results for Poland, Hungary and France present a mixed picture and an Irish scheme to spot mislabelling of pork products by DNA testing is alunched.   Brazil’s declaration that the State of Santa Catarina is FMD free and its hopes for an improved export trade to Japan are reported. The Danes visit China whilst VION’s CEO leaves suddenly whilst Danisco’smake an appointment in Europe.The Dutch PVE express their views about compliance with the EU’s new pig welfare rules – there is confusion about application of the rules  and monitoring. Iowa State University’s latest calculations on how much money hog producers are losing are reported. And Chile’s problems with the Agrosouper pig plant are not over.

Dr John Strak, Editor Whole Hog