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Phone: 07 4697 3344 • Fax 07 4697 3532
Vol 22. No. 6 June 2018 Australian Pork Newspaper PO Box 387 Cleveland 4163 Phone (07) 3286 1833 Fax (07) 3821 2637 Email
Celebrity chefs Li Yongtai, Manu Fieldel, Wang Haiwei and Colin Fassnidge treated produc- ers and exhibitors to a cook-off at PPPE.
See page 18 for more PPPE highlights ☛
Bittersweet Pan Pacific Pork Expo – tough times exposed under the Queensland sun
THE last week in May was one of the most important weeks in the pork industry calendar over the past two years.
With the profitability chal- lenges for our producers, the Australian Pork Limited Board meeting and our Del- egates’ Forum a day later were both focused front and centre on what we can do about im- proving the negative outlook faced across the industry.
The following days of the Pan Pacific Pork Expo were a bittersweet experience with what can only be described as a surprisingly successful PPPE among plenty of discus- sion about the realities for the future – which are not all good news.
While it wasn’t on the for- mal agenda, the opportunity to bring the APL members and other producers together to brief them on the market outlook as seen from the per- spective of APL management was too good to miss.
This happened on the Wednesday at 11am to an au- dience of 150 to 200 attendees.
We briefly presented the situation as we see it in terms of what’s causing the price pressure, what we expect to happen to supply and demand in the near and medium term and what APL has been doing about it.
What I said is more or less summarised below.
Put simply, we are in the midst of a profitability crunch in our industry caused by low pig prices and increasingly high grain prices.
The low pig prices are a re- sult of having about 7 percent more pork produced over the past 12 months compared to the same period beforehand.
This is on top of knowing that a year ago, we also had too much pork in the market.
Demand on the other hand is a good story, but at 5 percent year on year growth, it is not growing fast enough to over- take the increase in supply.
At APL, we see our responsi-
Point of View
bility at this time to do as much as we can, as quickly as we can to create more demand for the product you produce.
We can and do influence demand.
Your product, Australian pork, is becoming more and more popular on dining tables across Australia.
With respect to supply, we see our job to put the best possible information in front of our pig farmers so you can make the right decisions for your business.
This happens through our Production Survey, which is distributed to contributors three times per year as well as the ‘here and now’ type infor- mation built from information from processors and contained in each of the Communiqués distributed to producer mem- bers weekly.
As I said at the impromptu meeting at PPPE, I’d love to be able to say that we’ve seen the worst of this and it will all be better soon, but I can’t do that.
Our best information – pro- vided by producers themselves – is there are no clear indica- tions that our oversupply situ- ation is changing and we have forecast that right up to Octo- ber this year, which is as far forward as our survey looks.
Additionally, while we are not experts on grain market- ing, I can’t see grain prices coming down any time soon.
I don’t think we have seen the worst of our difficulties yet – in
my mind, that is likely to unfold over the next few months.
Despite this, the positive at- titude of some of our farmers never ceases to amaze me.
Even given today’s busi- ness pressures, a number of producers approached me at PPPE, worried about but com- mitted to our industry.
I feel very bad for the many pig farmers out there who are seeing the equity in their farms eroding week by week, waiting for some respite and not really knowing when it might come. With so much at stake and farmers being put under extreme stress day after day, it can be difficult to make the best decisions, so getting some help with those critical decisions is so important right now.
If you foresee that at some future point you might need some help with your financial planning given the current sit- uation, my suggestion would be to go ahead and do it now.
Do not wait.
This is a very stressful time for the industry and for those most affected by the current circumstances.
The right thing to do for all of us is to keep an eye out for each other and I encourage you all to do that.
If you need to speak to someone, you are welcome to give me a call or have a chat to those in your state pork organisations.
Pig prices a challenge but Pan Pacific Pork Expo a success
PIG prices may be down but attendance numbers were strong when the Australian pig industry met for the Pan Pacific Pork Expo on the Gold Coast recently.
PPPE chair and South Aus- tralian producer Andrew Johnson said he was really pleased with the turn-out of more than 680 attendees and 44 exhibitors.
“It is really great that so many people came along, es- pecially given how tough it is in this industry at present,” he said.
“However, that’s also why PPPE was so important, be- cause it gave us time to fo- cus on our industry, discuss what’s happening, share and learn from each other.
“The focus was on what we, as producers, and the broader industry can do as we move forward.”
The conference program included presentations from Australian and international guests, with topics ranging from advancements in tech- nology to human resources, as well as learnings from the poultry and crocodile in- dustries.
In the exhibition hall, attend- ees were able to meet up with suppliers and check out new equipment and technology.
Australian Pork Limited
CEO Andrew Spencer said the event had provided an opportunity for producers to gain a better understanding of the current pig price situa- tion, and empowered them to make decisions confidently about their own futures.
“It looks like the tough times will continue for a few months yet,” he said.
“PPPE provided a very val- uable opportunity for people to get together and check in with each other.
“We also came together for a frank discussion about the state of the industry to start the program, which enabled producers to air their con- cerns and discuss how we move forward.
“We’ll be taking away ide- as, as well as continuing to
focus on growing demand. “As the Pan Pacific Pork Expo continued, it became clear producers have their
eye on the future.
“There are challenges now,
but they’re looking at how they can strengthen the in- dustry into the future.”
The Pan Pacific Pork Expo was held on May 30 and 31, 2018 at the Gold Coast Con- vention and Exhibition Cen- tre, Broadbeach, Queensland.
The Pan Pacific Pork Expo is the biennial conference of the Australian pork indus- try, which brings together producers, processors, retail, foodservice, researchers, sci- entists, educators, subsidiary service providers and gov- ernment officials.
Colin Fassnidge, APL’s Mitch Edwards and Manu Fieldel.
Stockyard Industries, proudly supporting
PPPE for 20 years!
Stockyard Industries 54 King Street, Clifton QLD 4361
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