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Dramatic Falls & Small Gains in EU Pig Populations

16 February 2012, at 3:27pm

ANALYSIS - Almost half of EU countries have reported their pig counts in December 2011, writes Jackie Linden, senior editor of ThePigSite. Modest increases from the previous year have been recorded in Germany, Denmark and Italy but there have been double-digit falls in Poland, Czech Republic, Lithuania, Slovenia and Malta.

In its latest update, Eurostat reports the first figures for the annual pig counts in 13 of the 27 EU member states.

Some of the figures are provisional but, if they are confirmed, they reveal some dramatic changes in pig numbers in some countries.

In those member states recording an increase from the previous figures (2010), the changes were generally modest. Top EU pig-producing country, Germany, has reported an increase of 517,400 (or 1.9 per cent) in its total pig population, while Denmark, at no. 3, has 55,000 (0.4 per cent) more pigs and Italy, 29,700 (0.3 per cent). More pigs were also recorded in Sweden (3.0 per cent) and Luxembourg (2.1 per cent).

In numerical terms, some of the reductions in pig population have been dramatic: Poland reported almost 1.72 million (11.6 per cent) fewer pigs than the previous year, the Czech Republic 368,000 (19.9 per cent) fewer, Lithuania's count was down 139,100 (15.0 per cent) and Slovenia's 48,300 (12.2 per cent). The largest percentage reduction was in the Maltese pig count, which was down by 33 per cent from a year earlier.

If the changes in those countries still to provide their data were to be consistent with those already reported, we would be looking at a reduction of a little over one per cent in the total pig population in the EU-27, a trend that fits with other forecasts.

Numbers of pigs in the EU – 2010 and 2011
('000; as of 15 February 2012)
0 2010 2011 Difference % change
EU-27 151,053.6 0 0 0
Germany 26,900.8 27,418.2 p 517.4 +1.9
Spain 25,704.0 0 0 0
Poland 14,775.7 13,056.4 -1,719.3 -11.6
France 14,063.0 0 0 0
Denmark 12,293.0 12,348.0 +55.0 +0.4
Netherlands 12,206.0 12,103.0 -103.0 -0.8
Italy 9,321.1 9,350.8 +29.7 +0.3
Belgium 6,176.3 0 0 0
Romania 5,428.3 5,404.2 p -24.1 -0.4
UK 4,385.0 0 0 0
Hungary 3,168.0 0 0 0
Austria 3,134.2 0 0 0
Portugal 2,144.7 0 0 0
Sweden 1,520.1 1,567.7 +47.6 +3.1
Czech Republic 1,846.0 1,478.2 -367.8 -19.9
Ireland 1,500.4 0 0 0
Finland 1,339.9 1,289.7 -50.2 -3.7
Greece 1,087.0 p 0 0 0
Lithuania 929.4 790.3 p -139.1 -15.0
Slovakia 687.3 0 0 0
Bulgaria 664.0 0 0 0
Cyprus 463.7 0 0 0
Slovenia 395.6 347.3 p -48.3 -12.2
Latvia 389.7 0 0 0
Estonia 371.7 0 0 0
Luxembourg 89.4 91.3 +1.9 +2.1
Malta 69.3 46.3 -23.0 -33.2
p=provisional
Data from Eurostat

Further Reading

- You can view our report on the previous Eurostat data (for 2009 and 2010) by clicking here.