2019 was the Year of the Pig in France
Increased demand for pork in China has made prices in France to hike constantly since mid-March 2019, climbing o an average of 1.496 € per kg carcass, which is the highest level reached since 1992. In the latest Genesus market report, Philippe Malletroit, company's Director for France, makes a short description of how the Chinese Year of the Pork was felt in French pig breeders pockets.
"Compared with 2018, the annual market price average increased by 30 cents per kg, which means a 25% increase or a difference of around 28 € (31 US $) per market hog.
Clearly, the price increase began in mid-March and reached its highest level at 1.702 € per kg (1.899 US $) in December (see chart bellow).
Since mid-December hog price lost 6.9 euro cents per kg and got to 1.633 € per kg carcass by the end of the year (market of December 30th). Slaughtering activity in Europe declined during this period due to lower demand on domestic and export markets, but also due to end-of-year holidays," explaind Mr. Malletroit.
The price impact was reflected also in the piglet market, where prices for weaners and 25 kg piglets have jumped quickly. "December 27th, the price for the 8kg weaned piglet was 35.47 € (39.58 US $) per head in Brittany (main pig producing area in France), whereas one year earlier (December 21st, 2018), the price was 19.23 € (21.46 US $) - an increase of more than 84% in one year. We observe the same pattern for the 25 kg piglet, priced at 2.20 € per kg live weight (2.45 US $) this year on December 27th, compared with 1.15 € per kg live weight in the same period of 2018 - a 26€ increase for the 25 kg piglet,", commented Genesus' Director for France (charts bellow).
The outlook for 2020 looks promising for the industry but the biosecurity threat planning over Germany can impact the whole pork sector in Europe. "We expect hog prices to retain record levels due to the strong demand caused by African Swine Fever (ASF) in China. ASF severely affects Chinese domestic production which leaves a huge demand for pork meat and meat protein in general.
We need to pay special attention to ASF development in Europe, especially in Germany. If Germany would to get ASF disease, China will probably continue to buy pork from Germany but at a considerably lower price. This event would produce a ripple effect on Europe's pig market as a whole," added Mr. Malletroit.
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