- Posted by Marina
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) estimates that China should continue with significant imports of beef and pork until the end of this year. Of pork, the country should import a record 3.9 million tonnes - a volume 57% higher than that acquired abroad in 2019, projects the Department, in a report released today. As for beef, the Chinese should acquire 2.5 million tons - a volume 15% higher than the previous year, the agency predicts.
According to the USDA, the increase in imports from both cuts is due to the prospect of high domestic beef consumption and the still depressed production of pork. "With low pork production in 2020, resulting in high product prices, many Chinese consumers will choose beef as an alternative protein," says the USDA. In the year, beef consumption is expected to reach 9.45 million tons, up 7% compared to domestic demand in 2019, the USDA predicts.
The US government department considers that, while beef prices are high, most processors should remain cautious not to increase livestock production, due to the increase in input costs. "The number of head of cattle is expected to end basically stable in 2020. Most of the increase in demand for beef will be met by imports," adds the agency. In the year, China's beef production is expected to reach 7 million tonnes - an annual increase of 4%, the agency projects.
According to the USDA, part of the growth in beef consumption by the Chinese is due to the country's difficulty in resuming pork production since the beginning of the African swine fever (ASF) epidemic in August 2018. , which decimated the country's squad. "Despite the low number of reported official ASF cases and robust recovery efforts in the second half of 2019, hog production and slaughter in general will remain depressed in 2020," says the department.
In view of the Chinese government's stimulus for producers to resume their breeding stock, the USDA estimates that the country's pig stock should end this year 9% higher than that observed last year, at 337 million animals. The slaughter of animals is expected to fall between 20% to 24% compared to last year, with production reaching 34 million tons. "However, the gap in China's pork supply far outweighs the global supply available, resulting in persistent high prices," ponders the USDA.
Regarding Chinese imports, of both cuts, the USDA points out that the signing and implementation of the bilateral agreement between the United States and China should encourage the import of the North American product by the Asian country. "In addition, tariff exclusions for meat imports into the U.S. will stimulate additional purchases in 2020," concludes the report.
Source: Suinocultura Industrial