The gammon trade saw something of a blip this week, with prices falling around 5p/lb ­ but recovering to previous levels by the end of the week. Backs did something similar, firming again in anticipation of the Danish contracts for August due out shortly. "The gammon trade has been pushed about by the weather," said one trader, who has been waiting for better to bring on the salad trade. Nor has the dire state of the pigmeat industry has not escaped the notice of senior food industry executives. Speaking about Malton Bacon Factory at the firm's annual meeting, Unigate chairman Ian Martin said: "It is clear that a combination of lower pig buying prices and higher selling prices are necessary to restore the profitability of the UK pig processing industry." However, this week the Malton pig price continued its steady rise, hitting 101.5p/kg deadweight after breaking the £1 barrier on July 2. With an additional premium for some producers and no deduction for offal, pig producers are starting to see a recovery in the pig cycle. But now that retailers have got used to cheap bacon, slicers and curers alike face difficulties in recovering lost ground for their product. {{PROVISIONS }}

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