Irish farmers ready to step in if China turns its back on US pork
After another week of static pig prices, with processors quoting from €1.38 to €1.42/kg, Irish pig farmers are consoling themselves with hopes that China imposing tariffs on pork from the US will help European pigment exporters, including Ireland.
This could lift Chinese demand, important for Irish pigmeat products in the past four years, particularly lower value cuts and offal, but sluggish in the first quarter of 2018. Additional Chinese tariffs of 25% on US pork became effective last Monday, in a move apparently designed to hurt pig farmers in Trump-friendly states, thus exacting a political cost on the US leader, in retaliation for his new tariffs on Chinese steel and aluminum.
The US pork industry sold $1.1 billion worth of products to China last year, making it their third largest export market.
If the pork export flow from the US to China is interrupted, the gap in supply is likely to be filled by EU countries and Brazil, Canada, Mexico, and Chile.