The most recent EU short-term outlook for the coming months predicts pork production in the EU countries to remain relatively stable, revised by a half percent downward.
Looking further ahead to 2021, the European Commission believes that exports could drop by 10% as a result of the German situation, but also because of the expectation that China can increase its own pork production again.
Pork production in the 27 EU countries was 13.2 million tons in the first half year, only 38,500 tons (0.3%) lower than at the same point last year. 140 million pigs slaughtered, 1.7 million (1.2%) more than last year, with heavier carcass weights making the difference.
AHDB analyst Hannah Clarke explained to PigWorld, the site of the UK pig industry, that pork production was limited by lower slaughter in the main producing countries, as the coronavirus disrupted both processing and demand.
In addition, the recent discovery of African Swine Fever among German wild boars and subsequent trade restrictions have increased price pressure, Clarke said.
The recent trade restrictions for German pork by major Asian markets have also prompted the European Commission to downgrade its export forecasts to + 2% year-on-year growth. Earlier growth was expected.
Clarke added that the development of EU exports will be mainly affected by the way AVP business is handled and whether major trading partners will allow trade with ASF-free regions.
Germany is currently trying to get the Chinese to allow the import of meat from German states without AVP. Until now, China handles all permits on a national scale. Other EU exporters can fill some gaps in the German supply, although it is uncertain whether they can fully offset the volumes.