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Number of Czech pig slaughterings up

Numbers of pig slaughterings in the Czech Republic have been growing for the first time in years.

Slaughterings in the first three months of 2007 rose by about 3% in comparison to last year, data from the German market analyst, ZMP reveal.

This is the first time since 2003 the trend is moving up again. In the end of March, frustrated Czech pig farmers even threatened to block the Austrian border, claiming that too many Austrian imports would suffocate Czech pig industry.

The blockade plan was finally abandoned and replaced by milder forms of protest.

Import demand
The high import demand for pigmeat rose in the first three months of 2007,  by 15% to 38,077 tonnes.

Germany is still the largest exporter of pork to the Czech Republic. Austria is second and also Poland has started to export to the Czech market.

Czech pork exports rose by 20% to about 8,551 tonnes.

Total herd
On the other hand, the total Czech pig herd has been shrinking, according to data from the Czech ministry of agriculture. By the beginning of the month April, the total figure was 2.83 million head, a 0.4% fall in comparison to one year before.

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