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Still saving our bacon

The NPA secured the support of the PM and other politicians for their ‘Save Our Bacon’ campaign. Although UK pig prices reached historically high levels, they still lagged significantly behind the average cost of production.

The NPA campaign continued to gather publicity and column inches in October and, as reported in the Yorkshire Post and NE Business, they were successful in gaining a public declaration of support from Prime Minister, David Cameron, as well as other leading politicians – as reported on the NPA website.

The campaign message remained that if pork and bacon prices rose now this may avert more dramatic increases and possible shortages in 2013.

BPEX also published an updated version of their assessment on the impact of higher feed costs on the domestic industry ('The Impact of Feed Costs on the English Pig Industry'). The report indicated that current pig prices (just over 150p per kg) still lagged significantly behind the average cost of production (currently over 170p per kg) and high feed costs were likely to persist until mid-2013.

On 24th October, BPEX launched a nationwide tour to 19 cities, serving up free bacon sandwiches to thank shoppers for their support, under the campaign banner: 'Thanks for sticking with us'

The position in Denmark remained that larger more efficient Danish pig farmers are now producing at a profit. The fact that many Danish pig farmers produce a substantial proportion of their own feed has helped them manage the recent increases in feed costs. The improving market situation caused an upward revision of Danish price forecasts for 2013 announced at the Herning Pig Congress, based on a shrinking EU supply and good demand expected to prevail in most of the main pig meat importing countries around the world.

The prospects of dramatically rising food prices next year was also picked up in the national media in typically alarmist fashion:

Daily Express
Daily Mail
Daily Telegraph