Many provinces in Vietnam have been facing a shortage of pork after the outbreak of the African swine fever started from March this year as the demand for pork increases ahead of festive season, causing the price of pork to rocket.
Within the past month, the prices of pork at many provinces have started to soar heavily due to inadequate supply, raising concerns about higher and higher prices as a shortage of pork is likely to continue at the end of the year.
Underprivileged families could not afford pork because of high prices so they had to switch to buy food with more stable prices, such as chicken, duck and fish.
Meanwhile, in China, the African swine fever raging from last year to the beginning of this year has made the prices of pork escalate sharply. The price of pig has risen to above VND100,000 per kilogram at some places.
At a regular press conference held by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development on October 14 in Hanoi, Mr. Nguyen Van Trong, deputy director of the Department of Livestock Production, said that average price of pork in the North has risen to VND63,000 per kilogram by October 14 whereas it fell to merely VND20,000-VND25,000 per kilogram in the second quarter of this year.
In the Central of Vietnam, average price of pork was VND50,000-VND57,000 per kilogram.
The price of pig in Hanoi and Dong Nai Province, the two key places of pig-farming industry, on October 14 was VND59,000 per kilogram and VND62,000 per kilogram respectively.
Some people concerned that the forecast of a shortage of 200,000 tons of pork at year’s end as well as the number of dead pigs of around 5 million pigs being destroyed in the past seven months was not accurate and the actual figures might be much higher.
However, Mr. Nguyen Van Trong affirmed that up to now, 56 cities and provinces have already reported the output and the number of pig available. Accordingly, total pig herd at 56 provinces was above 22 million pigs. If including the number of pigs of the rest seven provinces which have not reported, total pig herd of the country will be at around 24-25 million pigs.
As for concern that pigs will be sold to China as the demand to import pork in this country is extremely high as China’s pig farming industry was also hit by the African swine fever, leading to food crisis. Mr. Trong said that at the present, China only allows pork to be imported officially instead of via cross-border trade so Vietnamese pork will not able to export to China.
In order to make up for a shortage of pork and stabilize supply for the market, the ministry has just held two conferences to promote cattle and poultry farming.
Deputy minister Phung Duc Tien affirmed that the ministry will not let a shortage of food happen as well as not let the prices of pork to highly climb. Currently, alternative food sources have increased significantly, of which beef has risen by 42 percent; poultry meat has edged up 13 percent; and seafood has surged 60.2 percent. If it is necessary, the ministry will allow enterprises to import pork to stabilize the price.