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China's meat imports drop to 20-month low

Customs data on Sunday reveal China's meat imports fell from a year ago October to their lowest in 20 months, as cheap domestic pork cut demand for overseas supplies.
calendar icon 8 November 2021
clock icon 1 minute read

China imported 664,000 tonnes of meat in October, down 12.8% from the same month a year ago, Reuter's reports. According to data from the General Administration of Customs, this number is the lowest since February 2020.

The data show shipments in the first 10 months of 2021 were 8.05 million tonnes, down 1.5% from last year's volumes.

October imports were also down from the 694,000 tonnes, brought in during September.

Import export

The largest share of China's meat imports is pork. After a surge in production following the devastating African swine fever epidemic outpaced demand, domestic prices have plunged this year.

Though pork prices rallied in October as colder weather boosted consumption, they are still less than half of what they were at the start of the year. Currently, prices are approximately 21 yuan ($3.28) per kg at wholesale markets.

Beijing has urged farmers to get rid of some sows and not rush expansion based on the recent rally, with excess production set to continue into next year.