Pig market draws to a close

Pig market draws to a close


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The final pig sale at the SA Livestock Exchange markets on Tuesday morning marked an end of an era for the selling centre, but was a sign of the times.

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The final pig sale at the SA Livestock Exchange markets on Tuesday morning marked an end of an era for the selling centre, but was a sign of the times.

The weekly market began in 1913 at Gepps Cross before moving to the current site at Dublin in the late 1990s, but the recent lack of buyer support at the saleyards has forced its closure.

Elders/T&D Pig Marketers auctioneer Garry Tiss said that numbers at the final sale were quite good, and there was a nostalgic feel at the market.

"It's sad, yes, but we have to move on," he said.

"We have the same buyers buying from the same producers every week, so it makes sense to instead travel a more direct route, taking out the market which is acting as an unnecessary middle man."

The market has seen its use-by date. - Neville Clarke

Wholesaler Cameron Forshaw, Golflands Pork Wholesale, Wingfield, said that as well as better efficiency, the direct route would be beneficial in terms of animal welfare.

"The pigs won't have to stand in the pens and get carted on and off trucks just for the market, it really is much better for them," he said.

Bridgewater buyer Neville Clarke agreed that for the benefit of most involved, it was time to move on.

"The market has seen its use-by date," he said.

"I've come here every week for about 30 years, but these days it's more out of habit. Lots of buyers are buying direct from producers now instead."

But Mr Clarke did acknowledge the closure would make it difficult for the smaller producers.

"The bigger producers will get stronger, and the smaller will shrink," he said.

"But we have to look after the majority, and this will help the majority of people involved."

Lochiel buyer Ben Cormack said the closure of the market would not have a negative impact on his ability to source animals.

"I buy about 1500 pigs a week, usually 100 from here, so not having this market isn't going to make a difference to me all that much," he said.

The Dublin market closure means the monthly Truro sale is the only remaining pig market in the state.

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