Reduced Pork Production Overseas Offsets North American Increase

CANADA - The chair of the Saskatchewan Pork Development Board says reduced pork production in China in 2014 and potential reductions in Europe in 2015 could create new market opportunities for North American producers during the coming year, writes Bruce Cochrane.
calendar icon 8 January 2015
clock icon 3 minute read

Despite the challenges posed by Porcine Epidemic Diarrhoea over the past year, North American pork producers saw record profitability in 2014 as the result of high hog prices combined with declining feed costs.

Sask Pork chair, Florian Possberg, notes it seems like the world does not operate uniformly in terms of profits.

Florian Possberg - Saskatchewan Pork Development Board:

China, for example, in 2014, had a rather unprofitable year due to high supplies.

China, which typically has about 50 million sows, actually saw their sow herd decline by an estimated five million sows.

Put that into context, that's almost the same number of sows that we have in the United States in total, the reduction in China so there's a possibility that we will see a significant increase or interest in exports to southeast Asia because of their decline in their herd.

At the same time, there is reports that the virulent strain of PED has entered Europe.

There is some reports that it has been seen in the Ukraine and there is a fear that it'll spread across Europe and, because the European 28 countries, a lot of them are very significant hog producers, if the disease does the same sort of thing in Europe as it did in North America we could see the supplies in Europe significantly impacted over the next period of time, 2015 and 2016.

Mr Possberg acknowledges that, as North American production increases, 2015 is unlikely to see the same level of profitability as 2014.

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