Fairer farm prices plea

A campaign for fairer prices for pig and poultry producers will be launched by farmers' leader Peter Kendall in London today.Unless farm-gate prices rise to match soaring animal feed costs, supplies of home-produced pork, bacon and eggs could be at risk, the National Farmers' Union's president will warn.

A campaign for fairer prices for pig and poultry producers will be launched by farmers' leader Peter Kendall in London today.

Unless farm-gate prices rise to match soaring animal feed costs, supplies of home-produced pork, bacon and eggs could be at risk, the National Farmers' Union's president will warn.

The pig sector is losing £3.9m a week due to increased feed costs but a rise of just 7p, to 17p per retail pack for pork, would save its bacon.

Mr Kendall will say that paying 12p to 15p more per kg for poultry or a dozen eggs by processors and retailers would secure the future for the pig and poultry sector and safeguard UK production.


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Further price increases of at least 30pc to 40pc this autumn could see feed costs rise from £180 to £230 per tonne. With half the cost of producing a finished pig accounted for by feed and a pork price of £1.09 a kg, a typical producer is losing £26 per pig.

Mr Kendall said: “Last month, as part of the supermarket price war, Asda promoted and sold £2 chicken. This is clearly unsustainable and sends completely the wrong message. However things are changing with Tesco this week announcing its plans to sell the same size bird for £3.39 - a rise of four per cent.

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“While this increase is good news we need to see it reflected throughout the supply chain and passed back to the farm-gate. Soaring feed costs are a global phenomenon, as wheat is traded on the world market, so importing chicken and pork from abroad is not the answer. The era of cheap food is coming, and must come, to an end.”

Stewart Houston, of the National Pig Association, will say: “Wheat prices have rocketed worldwide and as a result many pig farmers 'businesses - which are unsupported and are well run to high welfare standards - are under threat.”

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