SHANGHAI, Sept 12 (Reuters) – China announced on Saturday a ban on the import of pork and pig products from Germany after it confirmed its first case of African swine fever in a wild boar last week.
The move to block imports from China’s third largest supplier of pork comes even as the Asian nation battles an unprecedented shortage of the meat after its own epidemic of the deadly hog disease.
The ban, announced by China’s customs agency and its agriculture ministry, had been widely anticipated given Beijing’s history of moving quickly to implement bans in such cases.
The move is expected to benefit other major suppliers like the United States, Spain, Canada and Brazil. U.S. live hog futures climbed on Thursday and Friday on anticipation of a halt in Germany’s trade with China.
China is the world’s top buyer of pork and has been bringing in record volumes this year after its own output fell almost 20% in the first six months.
Germany exported some 158,000 tonnes of pork worth 424 million euros ($501.6 million) to China between January and April 2020, double the tonnage in the same period in 2019, Germany’s national statistics office said.
German farmers on Friday urged China to avoid a nationwide ban on imports of their pork.
The German agricultural ministry could not be immediately reached for comment.
(Reporting by Josh Horwitz and Dominique Patton; Editing by Edwina Gibbs and Clelia Oziel)
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