Encouraging pig survey results released

Provisional Defra Pig census results published this week report a 5.5% increase in the English breeding herd during the past twelve months.

The census results estimate the English breeding herd in June 2009 at 432,000 breeding pigs an increase of 22,000 from a year earlier and approaching June 2007 levels.

Mick Sloyan, BPEX director, said: “Whist the census results are only provisional they indicate a degree of confidence in the industry following the immense financial challenge of sharp rises in feed costs during 2007-08.”

“BPEX will continue to focus on projects to enhance herd health and productivity helping the industry to improve productivity and competitiveness that is needed to ensure longer term resilience”

The results are said to be a welcome indication of the industry recovering from the feed crisis during 2007 and 2008 which at its peak witnessed producers losing up to £26 per pig produced.

The increase in breeding herd is yet to be reflected in the finishing herd added BPEX due to the lag in the production cycle but results do indicate an increase of almost 3 percent in pigs up to 50kgs liveweight.

BPEX Chairman Stewart Houston said: “The results are encouraging but it is more important than ever that all elements of the supply chain work together to ensure we consolidate this growth and BPEX will do all they can to help achieve this.”

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