Skip to main content
Browse the 1966 Encyclopaedia of New Zealand
Graphic: An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand 1966.


This information was published in 1966 in An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand, edited by A. H. McLintock. It has not been corrected and will not be updated.

Up-to-date information can be found elsewhere in Te Ara.



Markets and Marketing

Exports of pigmeat rose rapidly in the early thirties until 1937–38 when over 28,000 tons were exported to Britain. Porkers, in demand in London, made up the greatest part. During and after the war baconers predominated, but, as fewer were produced and more eaten locally, exports have quickly dropped to the present very low level. Those still exported are mainly the heavyweight (161–180 lb) carcasses not preferred locally. The few thousand tons of fresh pork now being exported goes to Pacific markets rather than to Britain. Proprietary freezing works and bacon curers market most of it with enough cooperative marketing to ensure competition.

Though per capita consumption of pigmeats in New Zealand is well below that in Europe and North America, there has been a tendency for a more rapid increase here, in spite of an already high meat consumption. Present per capita consumption is approximately 19 lb of bacon and ham and 13 lb of pork, or a total of 32 lb of pigmeat a year. This compares with 65 lb in the United States, 51 lb in Canada, and 43 lb in Britain. Pigmeat, however, is only 14 per cent of all meat eaten in New Zealand – proportionally far less than that in those countries mentioned above.