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Welfare movements: it makes more sense to slaughter them

by 5m Editor
16 August 2007, at 9:53am

UK - From today, most producers will be able to move their pigs, for welfare reasons, to their next-stage accommodation.

They will do so in the bitter knowledge that it makes more sense to slaughter them where they stand, and get the carcasses disposed of by the National Fallen Stock Company.

Producers need 16p a kilo to cover soaring feed costs and processors are desperate for 6p a kilo to cover the cost of disposing of the offal they can no longer export to third countries. Processors want to pass at least half of the 6p on to producers.

Meanwhile the continental industry is imploding, as arable farmers quit pig finishing - because it makes more sense to sell their grain at a profit than to turn it into a loss by feeding it to pigs.

The continental pig industry is facing its biggest crisis in years. The British industry is facing what is probably its biggest crisis ever, given the treble whammy of feed prices, higher welfare production costs, and the offal disposal problem.

Retailers need to understand this simple truth: their convenient home supply of high-welfare fresh British pork is going to quickly disappear, unless they adopt a proactive stance.

Now that we are on the home stretch with foot and mouth, the NPA will be concentrating on the real issue facing the pig industry - By Digby Scott NPA.

5m Editor