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· Cheap EU pork flooding market as cull of unwanted pigs begins at UK farms
· U.K. Farms Are Killing Pigs They Can’t House Any Longer
Cheap EU pork flooding market as cull of unwanted pigs begins at UK farms
Holly Bancroft, Independent (UK)
via Yahoo Finance - 5 October 2021
High volumes of cheap EU pork imports are flooding the UK market and undercutting British farmers just as the industry faces an unprecedented labour crisis, a leading supplier has said.
A chronic shortage of butchers has caused a massive backlog of pigs on farms, and now low prices for British produce have left some farmers facing imminent bankruptcy.
Business failings are inevitable over the next few weeks unless drastic is taken, industry experts have warned, with some pig producers losing an estimated £17,000 a week.
The news comes as hundreds of pigs are slaughtered on British farms because of a lack of workers to process them for sale.
Phil Woodall, general manager at Thames Valley Cambac, a leading pig marketer, said first and foremost the sector has been hit by “a vast shortage of butchery staff as a result of Brexit, aggravated by the pandemic.”
He added that the situation has been aggravated by cheap imported product coming from the EU. German producers have been limited in their ability to export pork to China...
U.K. Farms Are Killing Pigs They Can’t House Any Longer
o Livestock backlog has grown to 120,000 animals, pig group says
o Slaughterhouse worker shortage forces farms to cull animals
By Megan Durisin, Bloomberg
October 1, 2021
U.K. farms have begun the daunting task of destroying pigs as worker shortages leave 120,000 animals with nowhere to go, meaning livestock could end up as pet food instead of pork.
A worker crunch -- driven by Brexit and the pandemic -- has seen processors cut slaughter rates by as much as 25% since early August, the National Pig Association said Friday in a letter to U.K. retailers. That’s left farms with a glut of animals that they’ve been housing everywhere from cattle barns to potato sheds, and many have now “simply run out of space,” the association said.
“The only option for some will be to cull pigs on farm, which is something that we have tried our utmost to avoid,” said Rob Mutimer, the group’s chairman. “Not only would this be an incredible waste of healthy pigs and good pork, it would be financially ruinous and incredibly damaging for your supply chains.”
The situation is one of the strongest examples of how Britain’s labor shortage is disrupting the economy, with more than half of all companies lacking staff. Fuel stations have warned it could take weeks for a petrol crisis to ease, and poultry companies have said Christmas turkey supplies will fall 20%.
Some farmers are facing a “welfare cull” and others could pay to take animals to slaughterhouses dedicated to killing pigs, rather than processing them for food...