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Swine Health Viewed as North America's Greatest Advantage as Competition in Pork Increases

by 5m Editor
20 January 2006, at 12:00am

CANADA - Farm-Scape: Episode 2035. Farm-Scape is a Wonderworks Canada production and is distributed courtesy of Manitoba Pork Council and Sask Pork.

Farm-Scape, Episode 2035

Rabobank International says the health status of North American swine offers that region its greatest advantage as competition within the global pork industry expands.

Since 1990 world pork production has increased by more than 42 percent. Rabobank Vice President of Food and Agribusiness Research Fiona Boal says two regions, eastern Europe and South America, are emerging as big players as the pork industry moves forward.

She suggests Romania and, much longer term, Ukraine are attracting considerable international interest and investment while Brazil and Argentina also show long term potential in the pork industry.

None the less she predicts the US and Canada will remain solid contenders.

"Certainly, if we start with the US, they've had 15 years of record pork exports. That's pretty unique to any agricultural industry.

We expect that they will continue to be a major player, that within the next couple of years they'll displace the EU as the world's largest exporter. We're seeing a lot of processing new capacity come on line in the US and that product that comes from those new plants and extensions to existing plants will be directed almost entirely to the export market.

The Canadian industry has also performed very well from an export perspective. They're very well received in international markets. Their high sanitary status, the quality of the product serves them very well and we expect that Canadian pork exports will remain right at the top of that list.

Boal stresses, what we need to understand is that countries in Eastern Europe and also South America will continue to struggle with disease issues which will constrain their market access.

She suggests a country like brazil, a country like Romania is years and years away from gaining access to high value markets like Japan and South Korea.

She predicts, in those high value markets, it's going to be competition between Canada and the US and maybe a couple of other existing players for awhile.

For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

5m Editor