Russia Seeks to Improve Domestic Pork Production24 October 2012
RUSSIA - Russian imports of live pigs, beef and pork decreased in the first half of 2012 as many importers delayed buying to take advantage of the lower duties that are a condition of WTO accession. As a result, livestock imports are expected to increase in the coming months, writes Alla Barinova, Moscow Office, Bord Bia – Irish Food Board.
The high prices of feed in the first half of 2012 resulted in a marginal decline in the Russian pig herd. Overall, pigmeat production has stabilised over recent years with support from state programmes and increased domestic investment. By early 2012, industrial production had increased by 9.6 per cent, and weight gain/day increased by 5.9 per cent compared to a year earlier. The numbers of farrowing sows increased by 4.6 per cent while the piglets per 100 sows jumped by 7.8 per cent. This reflects technological advancements in farm management, better quality veterinary services and improved genetics.
In December 2012, the Russian Ministry of Agriculture will initiate a programme called 'Development of pork production in Russia for the period of 2013-2015', as well as concept for 'Development of pork production in Russia for the period until 2020'. The Ministry is currently monitoring how WTO obligations will influence the competitiveness of domestic products. New post-accession import tariffs on breeding semen and embryos are also currently under consideration by the Ministry of Agriculture and the Customs Union of Russia, Kazakhstan, and Belarus.
Russia’s goal to improve domestic production through increasing its herd presents great opportunity for livestock importers. Ireland has taken an active role in pork and livestock exporting to Russia in the past decade. Irish meat and animals are seen as high quality. Irish exporters have developed strong relationships with Russian livestock importers and logistics have been steadily improving.