Poor ‘Third World’ countries are prepared to pay more for their pork than British retailers. In Cambodia the farm-gate price paid for pigs is currently equivalent to £2.47 per kg deadweight. This compares with the UK price of just £1.51 per kg.
“This makes a mockery of the claims by major retailers that ordinary British people are not in a position to pay more for their pigmeat,” said Matthew Curtis, ACMC Ltd’s managing director – the Yorkshire-based pig-breeding company is doing business in Cambodia.
“It is extremely cheap, even when compared with other red meats in this country. For example, retailers price fillet of beef at about £35.00 per kg compared with just £7.00 for fillet of pork.” Retailers, he says, are making a fortune out of the pig industry while British pig farmers are losing up to £15 – 20 p per kg – on every pig they produce.
“The price paid for pigs by processors and retailers in a supposedly rich ‘First World’ country hasn’t reflected the increase in feed prices. Pig farmers can’t sustain these losses. If prices don’t increase to a realistic level, they will simply be driven out of business and retailers will have killed the goose that’s laying their golden eggs,” he said.
“If only the major retailers would engage enthusiastically with the whole supply chain and share risk, we could all make a living and continue to provide pork and pigmeat products at an attractive price,” commented BPEX chairman Stewart Houston. “Even the Chinese, who have half the world’s pigs, are prepared to pay more than the British. Their pig farmers are currently receiving around £2.55 per kg,” he added.