China's Swine Industry May Propel US Exports

GLOBAL - A recent visit to China by a US Grains Council (USGC) consultant shows that the country's evolving swine industry may create a new export market for US producers, especially of DDGS.
calendar icon 24 September 2008
clock icon 3 minute read

Dr Bob Thaler of South Dakota State University and a USGC consultant was recently in China to evaluate the Council's Swine Technical and Managerial Training program. During his visit, he witnessed the rapid transformation of the swine sector.

"The Chinese swine industry has quickly changed from backyard production of one or two pigs to modern operations similar in size and scope to those in the United States," he said.

"In particular, modern farms have created an increased need for corn and soybean meal just to meet current production levels."

Dr Thaler said that Chinese producers plan on expanding their industry from approximately 650 million pigs a year to at least 730 million and that producers have told him that the country cannot grow all the grain needed for this expansion on their own and will therefore have to import a substantial amount of feed.

"With the relationships the Council has forged with Chinese swine producers through its program, US feed grains look to be the number one choice in an import situation," he said.

Dr Thaler added that as the industry grows, farmers will especially start looking at distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS).

"With the size of the Chinese swine industry, there's an incredible market for US-based DDGS."

In particular, US DDGS sales to parts of Southern China seem promising, according to USGC Director in Beijing Cary Sifferath. The Council's Swine Technical and Managerial Training program has worked closely with local swine producers, serving as a reliable source of technical information.

Dr Thaler's evaluation, which examined the last five years of the Council's Swine Technical and Managerial Training program, is expected to be completed later this year.

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