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German pig numbers continue to drop

German markets and price reporting agency – ZMP – reports that German pig numbers are continue to drop. The number of swine dropped to 26.4 million in November 2008. The total number of animals available for slaughter in 2009 is therefore unlikely to be any higher than in 2008.

The most significant declines were seen in the sow herds, where numbers have fallen by 143,600 animals or 5.9% in the past year. Since May, the total number of mothering animals has fallen by 94,000, a drop of 4%.

Farmers quit business
Also in decline is the number of producers within the German pig industry, with 16.7% of German pig rearing businesses closing down in the past year.

Decline in other countries
Falling pig numbers have been reported in many other EU nations, most notably in Denmark, where the global credit crunch has hit the industry hard. Eastern European pig herds are also declining, with Poland seeing record lows.

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