The world is watching China’s hog industry closely as African swine fever has forced the country to cull nearly a third of their hog herd.
China’s second-largest pork producer, Muyuan Foods says it will continue to increase production this year, despite the challenges of ASF. The company says its betting on the reduced supply and surging pork prices to boost profits during this challenging time in the marketplace.
So far, more than 112 cases have been reported in 28 of China’s 34 provinces since August 2018. Cases have also been found in Mongolia and Vietnam, according to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations. The disease is fatal to hogs but does not affect humans. There is no approved vaccine for the disease. Learn more at the Farm Journal’s PORK ASF Resource Center: www.porkbusiness.com/ASF.
“Swine fever brings both benefit and harm,” Qin Yinglin, chairman of Muyuan Foodstuff, said in an interview on the sidelines of the National People’s Congress in Beijing on Wednesday. “We need to ride this violent hurricane out and turn it into a superb opportunity for our development.”
While he didn’t give further details of the expansion plan, he said the company has taken several measures to cope with the disease, including disinfecting trucks used to transport pigs, sterilizing animal feed with heat and filtering air on farms. Last year, Muyuan supplied 11 million pigs to the Chinese industry.
Analyst say large companies like Muyuan could benefit the most from the rising prices of pork in China because they are better equipped to tackle the disease, while smaller farms are more likely to be wiped out.
Small farms—with less than 500 pigs—make up 80% of China’s production, according to Chen Huanchun, a fellow at the Chinese Academy of Engineering.