Global Prices Bode Well for Increased Exports to China
By JoAnn Alumbaugh, Editor, PORK Network
April 18, 2017
Despite low domestic prices for pork, global prices are still attractive, and China is expected to import about three million tons of pork in 2017. This is similar to last year's level despite rising domestic production, a senior industry official said.
"Global prices are still attractive for importing pork into China," Juhui Huang, Shanghai-based vice president of Brazilian food conglomerate BRF SA said in an interview. "We expect pork imports will remain the same as last year at around 3 million tons."
China, which accounts for half of the world's pork consumption, has been rebuilding its herd of pigs following widespread culling in 2014 when prices were low.
Smithfield’s parent company, WH Group, will evaluate market conditions carefully before expanding pork processing operations in that country because of the over-capacity.
Chairman and CEO Wan Long said he expects pork prices to fall to an average of 14 yuan to 15 yuan ($4.20) per kilo this year after hitting a record high in 2016.
His comments come four years after WH Group bought U.S.-based Smithfield Food Inc., the world's biggest pork producer, for almost $5 billion, in a deal aimed at tapping the massive supplies of U.S. meat for export to China.
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