China’s Gov’t to Buy Pork for Reserves
U.S./China talks continue via video, with U.S. team to return to Beijing soon
By Jim Wiesemeyer, Pro Farmer
Posted on 03/07/2019 4:42 AM
Chinese authorities are planning to buy as much as 200,000 metric tons of pork for government reserves to bolster the confidence of pig farmers shaken by the African swine fever epidemic. Reports note the purchases of pork for government reserves will begin March 8. The purchases are expected to be carried out in two 100,000-ton tranches purchased during March and late April and early May. Zhue.com.cn says the first 100,000-ton purchase this month is confirmed but there are varying rumors about the total amount of reserve purchases. Observers report the history of reserve purchases they report indicates this could be the largest purchase of pork for reserves since 290,000 tons were purchased over 11 months during 2009-10. Only 10,000 tons were purchased in 2017 and 2018 and none was purchased in 2015-16.
Enforcement details for U.S./China trade deal still under discussion. “I’m perfectly satisfied that (U.S. Trade Representative Bob) Lighthizer isn’t going to give up until he gets one, but it’s still under negotiation,” Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) told reporters on Wednesday.
Trade negotiations with China are continuing via digital video, but the plan is to send some U.S. negotiators to Beijing soon, with expectations their Chinese counterparts will come to the U.S. later this month but ahead of an expected Trump/Xi meeting, that some reports say could take until early April.
President Trump was upbeat about the trade talks with China, but acknowledged they could fall apart. “They’re either going to be a good deal or it’s not going to be a deal. But I think they’re moving on very nicely,” he said. Read what you will into that.
USDA is expanding pork cargo screenings at ports and airports to keep African swine fever (ASF) Swine Fever out of the U.S. USDA is working with Customs to add 60 new beagle teams at air and sea ports, bringing the total to 179. The ASF-prevention measures announced today by USDA include: