August 28, 2008


Economy pork makes a strong showing in the UK amid lower pork sales


UK's discount chains such as - Aldi, Lidl, Netto - have been increasing their market share as the economic climate continues to worsen, according to the UK's National Pig Association.


In a bid to retain customers from defecting to cheaper supermarkets, UK's major retailers have been advertising their economy lines more aggressively.


However, the local pig industry is upset over it as most economy lines represent only a small share of pork sales and is not totally British.


According to British Pig Executive (BPEX), economy bacon is usually a mixture of British and imported as it tends to come from the ends of the loin that fall outside the specification for standard bacon. It is almost never labelled as British.


Retailers currently are driving down pork prices citing the fact that the UK's pork sales have dropped 6 percent compared to a year ago.


BPEX has blamed lower demand on the weather, arguing that last year's summer, being wetter, brought about higher sales as consumers turned to more substantial meals. In contrast, this year's sunny weather meant lesser pork consumption.


As for the outlook, it is expected that consumers will increasingly aim to strain their shopping budgets by returning to home-cooking, in place of more expensive ready-meals and convenience-meals.


This suggests an increase in meat consumption during the months ahead, the NPA said.

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