The Pork Show 2019 has made a large part of the influence of China and swine fever
African swine fever which has decimated half of the Chinese herd, protectionist measures, international agreements … The international scene is currently having a great impact on pork production here.
“We are currently living in a period of protectionism,” explains former Quebec Premier Jean Charest from the outset. He is currently a strategic advisor in the McCarthy Tétrault cabinet thanks to his significant knowledge of politics and international files.
There is a marked slowdown in investments which are now lower than GDP. However, pork production is well positioned to take advantage of promising markets. This is particularly the case in the Asia-Pacific countries where the middle class is growing. This is not the case in North America.
With the recent reopening of the Chinese market for Canadian pork, this is good news to take advantage of. Chinese New Year, which will be January 25, is a date to watch as Chinese people around the world honor pork during the biggest Chinese festival. The Chinese are the biggest consumers of pork in the world all year long.
Jean Charest recalled that he was the instigator of the agreement with Europe, the Commercial and Global Economic Agreement (CETA / CETA). He recalls that this is a good agreement for the pork sector. According to him, it is up to our industry to adapt to meet their requirements.
African swine fever
African swine fever has decimated much of the production of the world’s largest producer and consumer of pork, China. In his presentation, President of Global Agritrends, Brett Stuart, explained that he sees no return to normal in the coming years. China will have to contend with a lower supply of pork.
Until last year, China produced 50% of the world’s pork production. It is huge for a country that only holds 3% of the world’s arable land.
Due to the underreporting of losses by the Chinese authorities, it is difficult to accurately identify the Chinese losses. International estimates indicate that more than 50% of the Chinese pig population has been decimated. A quarter of the world’s livestock has disappeared.
The effect on pork prices is being felt. While in 2018, after the introduction of the virus in August of that year, the Chinese government released its stocks on the domestic market to stabilize prices, in 2019, this strategy no longer works. Pork prices in China are skyrocketing. In one year, the carcass price of pork has more than doubled in China.
The reversal of the situation is almost impossible since no vaccine exists for this disease which affects pigs. Repopulation projects are rare, even if they pay off because of the high price of pork. The risks are too great.
Chinese people who love pork much more than any other source of protein are in short supply. According to Brett Stuart, beef is the popular favorite to replace pork.
In 2017, each Chinese person consumed 88 pounds of pork, 24 pounds of fish and seafood, 18 pounds of chicken and 13 pounds of beef.
According to Brett Stuart, China will not recover 100%. The production is restructured more towards a specialized and high volume production, especially for maternities. It is at the level of fattening that there is a bottleneck. According to the analyst, it is a matter of several years before the situation returns to normal and it will probably await the advent of a vaccine against the disease.
The Pork Show 2019 gathered more than 1000 people in Quebec on December 10 and 11. It is the hog event that brings together the most people in Canada.