Thai pig farmers have protested CPF’s production leadership, which has led, they say, in the last six months to the lowest prices in the market.
In a rally, which took CPF’s leadership by surprise, 300 small-scale pig farmers, assembled in front of Charoen Pokphand Foods (CPF), Silom Tower Building in Bangkok, to demand that the market leader reduce its expansion of pig farms and pig production.
The farmers accused CPF of selling their pork products in local markets at prices one or two baht (€0.02 or €0.04) lower than those marketed by small scale farmers.
According to Somkid Rueangwilaisap, chairman of the Pig Farmers Cooperative, CPF’s pricing strategy has resulted in a revenue loss for small pig farmers of up awards of seven billion baht (€160 million).
Denying the allegations, Narong Jiamjaibanjong, deputy managing director of the CPF subsidiary, Bangkok Feed Mill Company, said that with only a 19-20% share of the domestic pig market this was not enough to influence market pig prices and CPF was agreeable to a law to control pig production.
According to the Thai Livestock Department, over the past six months the market price for pigs has fallen markedly while pork product prices, based on an annual consumption derived from 14 million pigs, have remained high.
This supports the small farmers’ grievance that the major pork companies producing altogether about 18 million pigs yearly, are dominating the market.
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â€¢ CPF: first quarter sales grow 6% (10 May 2007)