Poultry producers' great prices escape

Poultry producers managed to maintain prices for whole birds in June 2006 at the same level as in June 2005 and 6.4% higher than paid from 2001 to 2005.

Poultry producers managed to maintain prices for whole birds in June 2006 at the same level as in June 2005 and 6.4% higher than paid from 2001 to 2005, despite a plunge in demand and price earlier in the year due to the avian influenza scare.

According to the European Union's latest agricultural forecast this is a rebound from the March 2006 price of E131.3/100kg, when prices dropped by 9.8% lower than the five-year average.

Producers managed to push up prices to around the same level as last year by keeping the glut on the European market in storage.

Poultry meat production is expected to decline slightly in 2006 in response to lower demand as a result, it was forecast.

Following a 6.3% decline in 2005 and a short-term recovery in 2006-2008, EU poultry exports outside of the bloc are projected to stagnate due to strong competition from the rest of the world. At the same time the EU's 25 members will continue to be net exporters of poultry meat, although at a declining rate.

Meanwhile the medium-term outlook for the pig meat market is expected to benefit from rising demand and production, while beef production is expected to decline due to the gradual withdrawal of subsidies for the market and strong overseas competition.

A slight rebound is expected for 2006 with the re-entry of beef. Overall EU-25 beef production is expected to decrease over the medium term to just below 7.5mt in 2013, a reduction of 5% from 2005.

Pig meat is likely to remain favoured by consumers as following a slight decrease in 2004 to 2005 per capita pork consumption is projected to increase to 44.1kg/year by 2013 from 42.8kg/year in 2005, said the report

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