China-Livestock and Products Annual-2019
- African Swine Fever (ASF) is endemic across China, but high pork prices will incentivize many Chinese hog farmers to restock or expand, despite the significant animal health risks posed by ASF. The overall herd size is estimated to decrease by 21 percent in 2019, then further decrease another 10 percent in 2020. While pork consumption is estimated to fall at least 9 percent in 2019, continuing demand for pork will drive a sharp increase in imports, up 60 percent year-on-year. Frozen domestic pork stocks and imports have insulated domestic price increases in the short term. The combined effects of smaller frozen stocks and an uncertain slaughter output between now and Chinese New Year in early 2020, increases the likelihood of significant consumer price hikes in early 2020. ASF will also contribute to increased beef demand (along with other animal proteins) in China. Despite soaring beef demand in China, U.S. beef imports remain constrained by market uncertainty, China’s retaliatory tariffs, and other factors.