March 17, 2020


Updated data: Cost of pig meat production in UK up 8% in 2018



The cost of pig meat production in the UK rose 8% to £1.47 (US$1.81) per kilogramme in 2018, according to the annual publication "The Pig Cost of Production in Selected Countries".


In comparison, the average cost of production in the EU was £1.44 ($1.76)/kg deadweight, a 4% rise compared with 2017. The publication contains the updated (the latest) 2018 data and, for the first time, reports on indoor and outdoor sows separately.


The report also revealed that average feed prices were higher, increasing across the participating EU countries by an average of just over 9%.


Carol Davis, lead analyst at the UK-based Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board, said: "These latest figures show that in comparison with the previous year, EU pig prices were relatively weak during 2018 as supplies increased.


"Good profitability during 2017 had encouraged herd expansion and on top of this, feed prices were on an upward trend, meaning that producer margins generally worsened as the year progressed. The impact of lower pig prices, particularly during the autumn, therefore, had an exaggerated effect."


The report also revealed a 1% increase in pigs weaned per sow in the UK's indoor herd to 27.35. However, as a consequence of the weather in 2018, the UK's outdoor herds' performance fell by 3% to 23.22.


Excluding the UK's outdoor herds, there is a difference of 8.8 pigs weaned per sow per year between the highest and lowest-performing EU countries.


The report also showed that the average number of pigs finished per sow in the UK's indoor herds increased by 1% to 25.41 pigs and indoor herds produced more than two tonnes of carcase meat per sow—up 1% on 2017.