During the first half of the year pig prices have increased from £1.33 per kg to £1.53 per kg, an increase of 15 per cent. Analysts have knocked between £6m to £8m, or up to 17 per cent, off their pre-tax profit forecasts. John Dickinson at Brewin Dolphin has reduced his estimate for the current year’s pre-tax profit by £6.5m to £41m and next year by £5m to £45.5m.
Martin Davey, the company’s chairman, said that Cranswick had not managed to secure price increases, claiming that consumers, hit by a fall in disposable income, were reacting against price increases in supermarkets and the grocery chains were fighting any attempts to pass on costs. “There is a lot of hesitation about putting more inflation into the food chain,” he added.