The UK pig industry is showing signs of beginning expansion, with producers at last becoming optimistic after a period of tumbling output and value, and ongoing anger over imports.
In recent months, the clean pig kill has averaged 3% greater than last year, and relatively low sow slaughter rates suggest breeding herd expansion might be under way.
MLC forecasts suggest the outlook is for modest rather than dramatic expansion of output. Clean pig slaughter this year is predicted to rise by a couple of hundred thousand head to 9.1 million, and reach about 9.4 million in 2006.