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Cracks in the European Egg Market Deepen as the Bird Flu, Inflation Rage On
Confronted with what some have labeled a “winter of discontent” amid soaring inflation, consumers throughout the European Union appear to be leaning more heavily on eggs as a low-cost source of protein. But while eggs by nature are more affordable than competing proteins, part of their recent affordability is somewhat artificial in nature—not reflective of current market conditions but rather the result of retailers’ unwillingness to pay farmers a sustainable price for their eggs—or to pass those prices on to consumers.
The situation is much the same in the UK. According to Farming UK, the British Free Range Egg Producers Association advised retailers last November and again this February that its members could not continue to produce eggs at a loss and requested a 40p/dozen increase. They warned that there would be a scarcity of eggs going into the Christmas period if the situation was not addressed, but their pleas were largely disregarded. And now, the very shortages they warned of have come to pass. Faced with limited supplies, and in some cases, empty shelves, some of the UK’s largest retailers—Tesco, Lidl and Asda among them—are restricting customers to 2-3 boxes of eggs per shopper, a move that is expected to last beyond Christmas.
Pork Producers Press Politicians on Public Policies
Preparing for and preventing foreign animal diseases, addressing an agricultural labor shortage, and increasing pork exports are the top public-policy issues pork producers will lobby their congressional lawmakers on over the next two days. During the spring Capitol Hill fly-in of the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC), nearly 100 producers from across the country are expected to participate — in person for the first time in two years — in NPPC’s Legislative Action Conference.
“Challenges facing our industry continue to evolve, and we hope our efforts this week help lawmakers understand..."
Pork Industry Priorities Included in Spending Bill
Congress in early March approved a $1.5 trillion fiscal 2022 budget bill, which keeps government programs running through Sept. 30 and has $730 billion for non-defense spending, including $25.1 billion for agricultural programs, mostly for USDA, with significant amounts dedicated to addressing foreign animal diseases (FADs).
Thanks to the advocacy efforts of NPPC — literally hounding lawmakers about appropriating adequate funds to prevent, prepare for and respond to FADs and arguing for other priorities — Congress listened, giving the pork industry almost everything it requested.
It’s been a difficult Congress to...
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