Meat & Livestock News

UK Pork Imports Climb as Domestic Supply Dips

BOLOGNA, ITALY. May 02, 2018: Sorage of prosciutto in a ham factory in Bologna, Italy

The UK’s pork imports have seen an uptick, reaching 65,600 tonnes in August. This is a rise from both the previous month and August last year. The increase comes as the UK’s own pork production has decreased, with the current pig count at its lowest in a decade.

While overall pig meat purchases have slightly decreased by 1.3% over the past year, the food service sector has shown a 7.2% increase in demand. This has influenced the rise in imports, particularly of fresh and frozen pork, which saw a 23% year-on-year increase.

Exports of pork from the UK in August fell by 16% from the same time last year, with the most significant drop in fresh and frozen pork exports. However, offal exports, especially to China, have remained strong.

The UK is facing challenges in exporting pork due to higher prices compared to the EU, affecting competitiveness. Additionally, global production increases in countries like Brazil, the US, and Vietnam are providing competitive alternatives in the market.

Set of Facts:

  • UK’s pork imports increased in August.
  • The UK’s pig population is at a low not seen in over ten years.
  • Demand for food services has risen, affecting import numbers.
  • Pork exports from the UK have decreased compared to last year.
  • Offal exports to China continue to be strong.
  • The UK’s pork exports are facing price competition internationally.