Japan, South Korea, and China have all suspended imports of pork and live pigs from Germany, which reported its first case of African Swine Fever in a wild boar last week. China is the world’s largest meat buyer and Germany is its third largest supplier.
U.S. Meat Export Federation Economist Erin Borrer says this could fuel growth for U.S. pork, primarily in China.
“Looking at Chinese import data, they were importing nearly 50,000 tons of pork cuts from Germany each month and that had doubled from last year’s pace. Germany was 14 percent of China’s imports. So, it will be a scramble from everyone looking to substitute in.”
Borrer says opportunities could emerge in other Asian markets, but on a more limited basis.
“In Korea, Germany was mostly shipping single-ribbed bellies, so we will not see a U. S. substitution there especially with our limited labor. Japan had already shifted heavily back to the U.S., especially for ground seasoned pork. That was a combination of the leveling of the tariff playing field and U.S. availability.”
The ban on German pork will likely push pork prices to new highs around the world. That price increase will also hurt China where they are still grappling with an unprecedented pork shortage due to their ASF outbreak.
Sources: NAFB News Service and U.S. Meat Export Federation