February 16, 2015


Pre-Lunar New Year prices of pork and pork products dip in China


Normally the price of pork in China spike up a few days before any festive season, but this time, in the run-up to the Chinese New Year, it's the other way around.


Prices of pork and pork products, especially dried pork—the favorite gift or give-away during the Lunar New Year-have dipped.


Official data showed that in January pork prices declined marginally to 24.8 yuan (US$3.97) per kilogram from the previous month's 24.9 yuan ($3.99).


A senior analyst with the Rabobank, Pan Chenjun, said the falling prices suggest slowing demand that may be due to consumer belt-tightening. "Usually corporate gifts include pork products like dried meat, but that has declined significantly this year", he was quoted as saying in news reports.


Government efforts to increase production may also have contributed to the stable or decreased prices.


The government has been successful in preventing the skyrocketing of prices of pork despite undersupply when it decided to intervene in 2011 by controlling pork imports and working to boost local production, which was easily done due to cheap cost of feed and corn. Analyst firm Mintec said pork production in China has increased 11% annually since 2011.


Pork prices are, however, expected to rebound after the Lunar New Year, when pork production levels off.

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