China looks to import Russian pork to cover domestic shortages due to African swine fever
Russian meat producer Cherkizovo is in talks to supply pork to China. The world’s biggest pork consumer is facing a major deficit of the meat after African swine fever wiped out half its pig livestock.
Several Chinese companies are interested in Russia supplying pork to the local market and working with Cherkizovo Group, the firm has confirmed to RT.
Russia does not currently export pork to China and the future of the deal is now in the hands of the Chinese authorities, who can greenlight the exports.
“We are waiting for this decision because our pork is competitive in price and quality compared with products from the US,” Cherkizovo’s press department told RT.
Cherkizovo currently supplies poultry to China and has recently expanded its export product portfolio. Last week the group signed agreements with Cargill China and COFCO Meat on chicken breast supplies, as well as chicken thighs and legs.
Pork exports could help the company expand its presence in foreign markets and in Asia in particular, where China is the largest player. Despite having the largest pork industry in the world, China has been facing a pork crisis since 2018, when African swine fever began rapidly spreading across the country.
The fatal pig disease has led to an unprecedented drop in the country’s pork production and has halved its pig herd to 200 million, according to Bloomberg. It may take China more than half a decade to recover the herd from the deadly virus and even more time to bring the production back to previous levels.
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