Market prices

UK livestock price trends analysis

Cattle

The prime cattle trade at GB auction markets levelled (week ended 29 July). Heifer prices fell by 1p to 153.4p/kg while steers were marginally dearer on the week at 148.9p/kg. The overall average price in the liveweight cow trade rose 3p to 91.1p/kg.

Deadweight cattle prices in GB have fallen of late. The steer price averaged 272p/kg (w/e 25 July), down 12p on the start of July. Heifer prices fell 13p/kg to average 269.2p/kg.

Exports of chilled and frozen beef in January-May 2009 increased by 8% year-on-year to 34,500t. Imports of beef and veal declined by 12% to 89,000t in the first five months of 2009 compared with a year earlier.

Sheep

The finished lamb trade at GB auction markets eased marginally (w/e 29 July). The SQQ average of 137.8p/kg, although 4p lower on the week, was 13p higher than the same week a year ago. The deadweight SQQ averaged 315p/kg (w/e 25 July). Despite this being nearly 8p lower on the week, it was 24p higher than year-earlier levels.

Exports of chilled and frozen sheep meat in January-May increased 7% year-on-year to 35,500t, despite reduced domestic production. Imports of sheep meat increased by 5% in the first five months of 2009, to 62,600t.

Pigs

UK pig prices rose to their highest-ever level in July. But the upward growth in pig prices has been losing momentum and the DAPP eased marginally (w/e 25 July) to average 155.1p/kg dw, just 1p more than in mid-June.

Pork imports in January-May amounted to 155,300t, 12% lower than a year earlier. Imports from the Netherlands were up 25% but shipments from Denmark declined by 33%. Imports from Belgium were up 24% in January-May, but there was a 19% year-on-year fall in pork exports to 39,400t.

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