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News 319 views last update:Nov 5, 2007

Australian pig price rise with short supply

Pig prices are set to rise in Australia before Christmas in the face of a shrinking market.

There are reports, according to Michelle Lepparde, market analyst with the National Livestock Reporting Service, that some retailers and wholesalers will be out of stock at Christmas time due to the short supply of pigmeat.

Lepparde said that if supplies become more scarce between now and Christmas, prices could be rather high and might remain high afterwards due to the lack of supply.

Demand for weaner pigs
"Producers have managed to avoid higher production costs for weaners," according to Steve Nutt, livestock salesman with William Inglis and Son. Approximately 80% of their business' yardings are now comprised of weaners. "There exists a niche market for weaners in Sydney by supplying Chinese and oriental restaurants," he said.

He predicted that prices would be dearer during Christmas, but would not rise to the high levels of previous years.

No extremes expected
In a comment, the National Livestock Reporting Service said that pork prices are not expected to skyrocket. The price rising tendency in the lead up to Christmas is a well-known phenomenon as every year there is a demand for bone in legs, the service said.

NLRS added that drought, high grain prices, a high Australian dollar compared to the US dollar and also large amounts of imported pork would prevent prices from going sky-high.

Related website:
• National Livestock Reporting Service

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