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Declining Hog Prices Impacting Production in Southern China

Chart comparing China's piglet prices RMB/kg Weekly monthly from 2010 through 2013As China’s hog prices continue to trend downward, piglet prices have fallen sharply in southern China. In the province of Guangdong, for example, the price of 30 kg crossbred piglets recently fell below 400 RMB ($65.36) per head. Replacement gilt prices in Guangdong have also suffered, with 100 kg gilts selling for 1,300-1,400 RMB ($212-$228) per head. Demand for spent sows also declined, with prices at 4.7-4.9 RMB ($0.76-$0.80) per kg, or about 64 percent of the average market hog price. (Source: Huaxia Pig Breeding Net)

In the higher-production areas of China, however, the price situation is not as dire. While hog prices have been in decline for the past two months, the national average price is still up 7 percent year-over-year. Piglet prices are experiencing a seasonal downward trend, but the national average piglet price is 2 percent higher than a year ago.

Meanwhile China’s surging demand for beef and sheep meat is putting a strain on scarce domestic supplies. Inner Mongolia is a region of China known for livestock production and for having a strong appetite for beef and sheep meat. But the price of beef sold in wholesale markets in the region’s major city of Hohhot is up more than 50 percent from a year ago to $4.10 per pound. Mutton is selling about 20 percent higher year-over-year, in the $4.50 per pound range. This is pricing many local consumers out of the market. (Source: Chinese Animal Husbandry Network)