The IFA has pointed out that pig prices are 40c/kg lower than this time last year, resulting in a “massive” €13,000/week reduction in income for the average pig farm.

Pig prices currently stand at €1.52/kg to €1.54/kg.

The IFA pointed out that the poor price, combined with increased feed prices, meant that farmers were barely at break-even levels.

The IFA also pointed out that it was difficult to justify the drop in pig prices given the continued demand.

“Demand throughout COVID from the retail sector has increased by circa 20%, which has almost offset the reduction from the decimated food service sector,” it said.

“Our export markets have maintained demand and even improved, especially China, which traditionally witnesses a drop-off in demand after Christmas in January and February.

“While the German pig price remains static at €1.20c/kg, there is a noticeable and welcome reduction in the backlog of pigs for slaughter.”