Increased pork imports in Japan
Canada and the US are the main suppliers of pork in Japan, both countries having an equal market share of 25% each. Due to stable pork production of almost 900,000 tonnes reported by Japan in 2019, imports in this country have increased by 3.7%, reaching 960,000 tonnes of fresh and frozen pork, announced the Japan Ministry of Finance. Top 5 main pork exporters to Japan is completed by Spain and Denmark, both with 12% market share, and Mexico (10%).
However, domestic demand is still low and prices have remained flat in the last 12 months but some analysts are thinking that Jpan is building stocks of pork to be covered in the event of an African swine fever outbreak. "It is possible that the increase in imports in 2019 was to build stocks as a safety net against African Swine Fever (ASF). Stocks have grown by 30% in the past year to over 210,000 in November 2019. The growth in stocks outweighs the growth in imports. Domestic retail prices have been falling, which altogether might indicate weak demand," commented Duncan Wyatt, lead analyst for AHDB.
Since September 2018, Japan was affected by a Classical swine fever (CSF) outbreak, with 53 cases reported in farms and further 1,373 cases reported in wild boar.