The Danes see continuing opportunities in Britain, but will their established base be strong enough to keep out lively new players?
Denmark is facing increased competition across the world, but one of its biggest markets may yet offer room for expansion.
The UK has traditionally been an important market for the Danes, but with the changes in the UK's domestic production, Danish bacon producers scent an opportunity.
But they are not alone, and they know it, acknowledges Jens Haven Christiansen, executive director of leading co-operative Danish Crown's pork division. "The UK market is getting more interesting. We have a real chance to grow our market share and that's what we intend to do.
"However, although we have a strong presence, we know we are not alone. The Dutch, Germans, French and Spanish are already knocking on the door. It's a big opportunity and we have to fight for it."
Globally, the Danes face increased competition from Canada and Brazil, particularly from the latter in the Russian market.
Anne Birgitte Lundholt, MD of umbrella organisation Danske Slagterier, says the competition is having an impact: "Brazil coming heavily into Russia has also had a knock-on effect on other markets. Canada was not important a year ago but now it has expanded."
And the threat from the new players looks set to grow, with Canada and Brazil set to expand their herds by 3%-4% while Danish production remains static.
Lundholt is philosophical but realistic: "The world market is growing, which makes it easier to see new competitors coming in, but competition is getting much tougher and we need to be clever."
Meanwhile, consolidation in the Danish industry continues apace. As Lundholt points out, five years ago there were 20,000 farms, now there are 13,000.
The trend continues in slaughtering and processing. The recent merger of Danish Crown with Steff Houlberg, the country's second biggest processor, leaves only one other main operator, Tican, a relative minnow.
While Tican has expanded into processing, with the purchase of a plant in Esberg, Danish Crown is seeking efficiencies. The organisation is building a massive DKK2bn (£172m) slaughterhouse with the capacity for 75,000 pigs a week, which is due to open at the end of 2004. The plant will replace a number of older facilities, bringing the company's sites down from 15 to nine. However, the effects of the merger between Danish Crown and Steff Houlberg are still being felt and Danish Crown is still licking its wounds over government regulations imposed after the move.
Christiansen says: "We lost the debate about market definition ­ we viewed Denmark as part of a larger EU market, but that wasn't accepted."
As a result farmers are now able to send 20% of their pigs out of Denmark, for instance over the border to Germany, if they feel they can get a better price.
He says: "We're not afraid of it, but of course it's a risk, it could mean increased costs if farmers take advantage of it."
The move has added significance given the low price per kilo that Danish farmers have been receiving, below the cost of production.
The development took the industry by surprise according to Karsten Slemin, head of economics at DS. He says: "We knew prices would be coming down but it was more than we expected. They dropped to under DKK8 a kilo at one point, which was painful."
The reason, he says, was reduced demand in the EU as consumers went back to beef and cheap imports of poultry arrived.
But, as Lundholt says, farmers cannot take a short-term view. "Prices will pick up again in the second quarter of next year, it's a well known cycle.
"It's not satisfying for farmers at the moment, but they know they can't see things in terms of six months, they need to take a long-term view.
"The pig business is only for those who are willing to see it as a long-term investment."