August 25, 2006


Increases in pork imports cools off in South Korea


Price increases are finally slowing down increases in South Korean import pork sales after three heady years of near 50-percent growth.


Even though the volume of pork imported for the first seven months of 2006 increased nearly 20 percent over the same period last year, it was the smallest increase for the past three years compared to the 49.4 percent increase in 2005 and 44 percent increase in 2003.


One reason cited for the apparent slowdown was that Chile, which supplies nearly 10 percent of South Korea's imports, lowered production this year. Another reason was that traders may be scaling back on purchases in anticipation of the opening of the South Korean market to the resumption of the US beef trade expected in October.

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