Making news

Pork prices fall as Vietnam increases imports

The imported pork and declining meat consumption have pushed pork prices down, helping stabilise the consumer price index.

This month pork has been sold at the Hoc Mon wholesale market in Ho Chi Minh City for around 72,000 VND (3.17 USD) per kilogramme, 8,000 VND down from previous months, according to its management.

Le Xuan Huy, deputy general director of the CP Livestock Joint Stock Company, said hog prices are down because of increased imports of both frozen pork and live pigs as well as lower demand.

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, in the first seven months of this year Vietnam imported more than 93,248 tonnes of pork, mainly from Canada, Germany, Poland, Brazil, the US, Spain, and Russia, 223 percent up from the same period in 2019.

The ministry licensed imports of pigs on the hoof from Thailand from mid-June. As of August 36 companies registered to quarantine more than 4.7 million pigs arriving from Thailand into Vietnam, and over 75,000 of them have been slaughtered so far.

Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Phung Duc Tien said Vietnam has not set a quota for imports of live pigs or meat and the Department of Animal Health always facilitates customs clearance of imports.

But importing pork has been difficult since African swine fever reduced the global pig population by 12 percent.

Nguyen Kim Doan, vice chairman of the Dong Nai Livestock Association, said live hog prices in the south has been around 70,000 VND per kilogramme over the past week, and sometimes even lower while the production cost at present is 71,000 VND.

Another reason for hog prices to fall was the advent of the seventh lunar month, known as Vu Lan month, on August 19, a time when many families do not eat meat for religious reasons.

“The return of COVID-19 also caused the price of pigs to fall as demand decreased.”

Nguyen Van Trong, director of the ministry’s department of livestock production, said as of the end of July the country had some 25.2 million pigs, 81.9 percent of the number before African swine fever first hit in January 2019.