23rd June 2006, LONDON: Estimates released by the 'European Compound Feed Manufacturers Federation' Friday showed that the production of both EU cattle and pig feed was expected to be 1% lower for the year 2006.
The trade group explained that the fall in cattle feed production reflects a long standing downward trend. Production of pig feed is also set for a small decline despite an expected reversal from the recent downtrend trend in new E.U. member states such as Poland.
Poultry feed production is still expected to high, dependent on any further developments in avaian influenza in the region. The FEFAC said that poultry feed production dropped over 10% at the beginning of the year due to fear of avian influenza, even though no large scale outbreaks had occured at that time.
"Since media attention has ebbed progressively, a recovery towards more normal E.U. poultry consumption levels per capita may still be possible," said FEFAC.
The return to more normal rates would keep the decline in E.U. poultry feed production in 2006 at around 4%, but if further infections are seen a larger drop is possible. The trade group said the return of bird flu could cause poultry feed output to fall as much as 25% in certain countries on a monthly basis.
FEFAC estimated E.U. compound feed production (outside of Luxembourg, Malta and Greece) at 143.3 million metric tons in 2005, down 0.8% from the previous year. Within that figure feed for pigs totaled 47.34 million tons, for poultry 45.97 million tons and for cattle 38.01 million tons.
France was the leading producer of animal feed at 21.99 million tons in 2005, followed by Spain with 21.09 million tons and Germany with 19.61 million tons.
Source: Lisa Kallal; Dow Jones Newswires.