A report by Rabobank says African Swine Fever is the single biggest challenge in the global pork market. Senior Analyst Chenjun Pan says that means opportunities for some and threats for others. She says Chinese pork supplies are believed to be okay in the first quarter, but imports are expected to increase after that.
Reports say China has ordered more than 950,000 pigs destroyed so far, causing some producers to rush pigs to market and dropping the wholesale price more than 15%. Domestic production could fall as much as 20%, leading to more imports later this year.
Rabobank expects U.S. pork exports to improve despite the uncertainty of U.S.-China trade talks, in part because of stronger sales to Japan and South Korea. Even with an expected shortage of pork later this year, Pan says Chinese demand of U.S. pork remains difficult to estimate.