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An industry in the midst of change

by 5m Editor
12 June 2003, at 12:00am

By Australian Pork - Driven by the pressures of globalisation, food safety, technology developments and trade reforms, the Australian pork industry has undergone a profound structural change over the last 10 years.

Driven by the pressures of globalisation, food safety, technology developments and trade reforms, the Australian pork industry has undergone a profound structural change over the last 10 years. Until the mid 1990s the focus of the industry was almost solely on the domestic market since international competitiveness was not critical to its profitability.

Today the picture is far different. Despite harsh climatic conditions and relative isolation, strong global competition in the last five years has widened the Australian pork industry’s focus from the domestic market to successfully capture and build export markets.

As the Australian pork industry is quite small, producing only 0.4 per cent of the world pork production and accounting for only 1.4 per cent of world exports, it is simply unable to compete on volume in the international marketplace on a traditional commodity basis. The focus is therefore on developing niche markets based on Australia’s ‘world’s best health status’ and in tailoring the product to meet the specifications and preferences of consumers in the domestic and international markets.

Through such changes in focus, the gross value of Australian pig production has grown from only $690 million in 1998-99 to $963 million in 2001-02.

Studies undertaken by the Western Research Institute have gone further by calculating the net value of the Australian pork industry through a socio-economic impact study.

This report highlighted the broader impact of the pork industry through the value chain, taking account of the economic impact on all related industries.

This study determined that the Australian pork industry generates a total value of $2.576 billion to the Australian economy and provides 33,863 jobs.

Chapters in the full report include;

  • Australian pork industry snapshot
  • Industry cohesion leads to improved performance
  • Production growth in the face of increasing costs
  • Benefits in the face of adversity
  • New campaign boosts pork’s share of the domestic market
  • Recent industry growth driven by export development
  • Multilateral trade negotiations present further opportunities
  • Growing impact of imports
  • Feed grain prices and maintaining world’s best health status key industry priorities
  • Addressing the challenges head-on
  • Shaping the future
To read the complete PDF document - Click Here (22 pages, 822k)

Source: Australian Pork - March 2003