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Crisis in Czech pig market

A crisis is looming among Czech pig breeders and pig meat processors according to Jan Veleba, president of the Agricultural Chamber.

He stated further that the steep hike in cereal prices has further deteriorated the downward trend in pig and pig breeder numbers. If the trend continues, prices in stores will significantly increase as the Czech Republic is no longer self-sufficient in pig production.


Each year one in ten pig breeders ceases his activities.


Statisticians
Czech statisticians have estimated that pig numbers have decreased by 870,000 in the last seven years to 2.816.000 pigs.


"Cereals are a major element of feed mixtures in pig breeding. As the prices of cereals have doubled each year, feed mixtures are thus becoming the mostly costly item in pig breeding", said Veleba.


"Producing a kilo of pig meat is about five crowns higher than the profit earned from its sale," stated Veleba.


More involved
Pavel Kreicik, director of the sales cooperative, Centroodbyt, explained that farmers want the Ministry of Agriculture to get more involved in tackling the problem of domestic pig breeders by taking an example from neighbouring countries who are secretly supporting their farmers with subsidies.


One quarter of animal production and 10 % of the country's agricultural produce n the Czech Republic is pig breeding.


Consumption
Per year, Czechs consume about 41 kg of pork per head. Before accession to the EU in 2004, the Czechs were self sufficient in pork production.


In 2006, domestic pig production was only able to cover 80% of demand. This year, however, it will only be able to cover 75%.


Related websites:
• Czech Ministry of Agriculture
• Centroodbyt 


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