The war in Ukraine, in addition to its immediate human disasters, is raising concerns about future food shortages. The fall in the production of raw materials and the consequent increase in prices have an impact on many sectors.
In Eure-et-Loir, three breeders agreed to answer our questions about the consequences of the skyrocketing cost of animal feed.
Transport, fishing, industry… Announcements by Jean Castex to compensate for the price increase due to the conflict in Ukraine
Sharp rise in the cost of poultry feed
Antoine Sagette, breeder of poultry and laying hens, in Saint-Bomer, analyzes the situation with regard to differences in the production system: “For birds, the consequences of rising feed prices do not have the same impact on contract farmers. In this case, the company with which the breeder contracts adapts the price for removing the eggs taking into account the increase in the cost of the feed. But it becomes catastrophic when the creator is on the free market. The ton of feed almost doubled in eighteen months, with an increase of more than €200, including €100 in one month. However, in the cost of egg production, the main expense is feeding the hens. The dozen eggs would have to absorb an increase of 35 euro cents to take this into account.”
“In standard poultry, you would need a 15 cent increase per kilogram of live weight to cover the energy increase and a 25 cent increase to offset the additional cost associated with feed. »
The bird flu problem
Alice Challine, breeder of label hens and laying hens in Billancelles, is obliged to scrutinize the evolution of the price of food: “I am doing my calculations monthly at the moment: my food supplier gives me his price, then I take stock of whether or not I am increasing the price of my But the diesel price increase, I cannot pass it on. Feeding my chickens represents 75% of the selling price of eggs. For our small non-contracted farms, the price increase is mandatory. As for the increase in energy costs, I have lucky to have renovated my building, so that the laying hens keep warm. Some breeders today are losing money. »
For others, the solution has been found: it’s a matter of temporarily stopping to fill a cattle shed. The risk is therefore a drop in poultry production.
No avian flu in the breeding of Eure-et-Loir
Especially since bird flu invaded French farms, compromising the entire poultry industry: “My chickens haven’t left the building since September, testifies Alice Challine. I’m waiting for the green light from my vet. I bring them hay, stones so they can exercise their scratching instinct. We are experiencing an unprecedented poultry crisis. Many breeders are affected by bird flu. However, it takes at least six months to make a laying hen… We are truly in the unknown. »
Pig farming and animal feed
Denis Chenevière, head of the swine section of the FNSEA 28 union, highlights the specifics of the sector: “From September onwards, we saw that it was starting to get complicated. Pork prices are not high enough for our costs. The cost of producing a pig is 60-70% feed. Pig farming is not used to receiving help. We are in direct contact with the markets. The National Swine Federation has been mobilizing for several months around these difficulties. What is certain is that it will leave traces. We have no more reference points. Some pig farmers do not fill their barns with confinement. It’s hard to get supplies of minerals or sunflower cakes. A phenomenon of magnitude is revealed: production at a loss. Faced with the great distress of an entire sector, the rescue plan for the pig sector, implemented by the State, provides for cash aid, while the Mutualité sociale agricole is creating a system for deferring the payment of contributions and social contributions. If the FNP congratulates itself on the existence of this exceptional plan, it cannot, according to it, completely fill the treasure hole. For her, it is necessary “from now on, in the price paid to breeders, to take into account the contracts and a fair weighting of production costs, as required by the Egalim 2 law. It is the survival of swine farms and the French pigs that are at stake”.