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Irish farmers call on pork processors to stop price cuts

The Irish Farmers Association has called on pig processors to stop undermining the Irish pigmeat sector with unjustified price cuts. Within the EU, the Irish pig farmers are not making as much money as their counterparts on the mainland.

Tom Hogan, chairman of the IFA pigs committee, called on the pork processors after a move to reduce pig prices.

Weaner pigs on a farm in Ireland. Photo: Irish Farmers Journal
Weaner pigs on a farm in Ireland. Photo: Irish Farmers Journal

Price cuts are not justified

In an IFA press release, Mr Hogan said that the factory price cuts are not justified based on market returns, pointing out that pig prices across the main EU pig producing nations have all stabilised above €1.70/kg.

Mr Hogan said, “This is after a period of 12 weeks when the pig producers across mainland Europe were receiving €1.80/kg plus for pigs as the pigmeat market was returning this level. Irish pig farmers never achieved that high price and the Irish price was let fall to well below the EU average. After lagging behind the EU trade for so long, it is completely opportunistic for pig factories to drop Irish pig prices when they never implemented the increases that were due over the past three months.”

Market update comparison

Mr Hogan said that the latest market update from the UK is that pig prices remain stable at £1.60/kg, which is equivalent to in excess of €1.80/kg.

The press release pointed to the financial hardships that all pig farmers endured during the disastrous pig prices years of 2015-2016. Hogan therefore called on the processing sector to refrain from manipulating the market in their own interests and offer back the Irish pig farmer the true value of their product. He said the factories must stop undermining the Irish pig production system at this delicate time.

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