USDA forecast decreased demand for meat from China
China is to play an important role next year in the international meat trade. Volumes of pork imported by the giant Asian market is expected to drop as a recovery in the national pig inventory is underway, forecast USDA. While at this moment China is the world's largest importer of pork due to the ASF crisis, in 2021 volumes are expected to drop by 6%, according to the USDA report. Global pork prices are expected to be lower due to increased sales in price-sensitive markets.
Regarding beef, Chinese imports will increase by 4%, reaching 2.9 million tons in 2021, another all-time high. Changes in tastes and relatively modest production growth are believed to support future beef imports. However, the rebound in pork production will also slow down the growth of these imports to the slowest pace in the last 5 years. In the first 9 months of 2020, China's beef imports have reached 1.57 million tonnes, up 38.8% from the same period of 2019.
Regarding poultry meat, estimates show a decrease in Chinese imports of 6%, to 925,000 tonnes. Weaker demand stems from the expansion of domestic production and the limited willingness of consumers to offset the consumption of pork with that of poultry, particularly in light of an increased supply of pork.
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