Stability is returning to the British pigmeat industry after the painful contraction of the past few years, according to the MLC.
Numbers of finished pigs are disappointing, causing problems for processors and retailers wishing to source domestically. But improvements to breeding herd structure are reassuring.
Recent slaughter rates have still been about 10% lower than in late 2004, but MLC market analyst Tony Fowler said breeding stock numbers would stabilise above 450,000.
Meanwhile, a BPEX report shows that British pig farmers have the highest average cost of production in Europe bar Italian Parma ham production.