The UK pig price is continuing to drop, according to the National Pig Association (NPA), but at a slower pace than the pork market decline taking place in major EU pork-producing countries.

The EU-spec standard pig price was down by a further 1.62p during the week ended October 14 to stand at 220.12p/kg.

This was the second biggest fall of the year – and the standard pig price (SPP) has now lost 5.5p since mid-August, but still currently stands 20p ahead of a year ago, the NPA said.

Following the previous week’s loss of 1.5p, the all pig price (APP), which includes premium pigs, lost another 0.61p to stand at 221.08p/kg during the week ended October 7.

This gap between the two price indexes increased once again, with the SPP now 0.65p ahead of the APP.

Declining UK prices

“One of the biggest drivers in the decline of UK prices is falling EU prices,” the NPA said.

“The EU reference price dropped back by a further 2p during the week ended October 8 to stand at 193.78p/kg, led by falls of 4p in Spain, 3p in Germany and 2p in France.

“The EU reference price is now nearly 22p down on its mid-July high, while the latest drop has increased the gap between the UK and EU reference prices to beyond 25p, compared with a low of just 6p during the week ended July 23. Prices in a number of EU countries, led by Germany, fell back further last week.”

Estimated Great Britain slaughterings remain “well below” year earlier levels, the trade association for UK pig farmers said.

“The figure for the week ended October 14 was down by more than 1,000 on the week, at 160,300, 27,500 down on the same week in 2022,” it said.

“The figure quote last week for the week ended October 7, 169,000 has been significantly revised downwards to 161,600, also 27,000 down year-on-year, while all the figures quoted for a number of weeks prior to that have also been notably reduced.

“Having topped 90kg for the first the time last week, average carcase weights in the SPP sample moved up by a further 0.27kg to 90.58kg, having spent the entirety of 2023 until early October averaging 88-89kg. The latest figure was 0.3kg down on a year ago.”

London feed wheat was quoted by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB) on Wednesday at around £190/t for November, up by £8 on a week ago, and £195/t for January, £7 up on last week.