African swine fever in China poses risk to global pork supply
Jul 09, 2019 (China Knowledge) - China is grappling with this deadly pig disease, which has spread across much of the country in the past year. African swine fever’s impact is still unclear. And currently there is no cure or vaccine for the disease, often fatal for pigs although harmless to humans.
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) forecast a 5 per cent fall in Chinese pork output this year, while imports were forecasted to rise to almost 2 million tons from an average 1.6 million tons per year in 2016-2018.
Measures to contain the outbreak of the swine fever are likely to inhibit global pork production in the short term. As it is uncertain whether those measures will work well, the medium-term impact of the epidemic may become more severe than currently anticipated.
In addition to disease threats and continual weather risks, the rising Sino-US trade tension also bring about great pressure on the agricultural markets. Chinese tariffs as part of a trade dispute would prevent US to benefit from short-term increase in demand for pork imports, the FAO and OECD said.
The Chinese authorities have said that outbreaks are slowing and that pork outputs are recovering. As Asia continues to be the main driver for global pork demand, pork production is projected to recover by year 2020 to 2018 levels.
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