American farmers to profit from swine fever in China?

Business & Technology

The Wall Street Journal reports (paywall) that since the first reported outbreak of African swine fever in China in August last year, the country has culled roughly 1 million pigs.

  • In February, “China’s pig population in February was 17 percent lower than the year before, according to the government — a decline almost equal to the total number of pigs in U.S. farms.”
  • After China slapped retaliatory tariffs of up to 70 percent on American pork in 2018, U.S. exports to China and Hong Kong fell 21 percent.
  • But to make up for the shortage of Chinese pigs, “China may have no choice but to import much more pork, even from the U.S. Hog futures traded on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange have surged nearly 50 percent in the past month amid expectations that China will push up pork prices in the U.S.”