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US News German pork, banned from exporting to Asia, risks invading the French market

17:30  29 september  2020
17:30  29 september  2020 Source:   latribune.fr

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Thousands of tonnes of German pork that can no longer be exported since the outbreak of swine fever in wild boars in the east of Germany will weigh on the European market, points out Tuesday the organization Culture Viande which represents the French industrialists.

Since the discovery, announced on September 10, of a first infected wild boar carcass in the Brandenburg region, on the Polish border, Japan, China, South Korea, Brazil and Argentina have suspended imports German pork.

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Harmless to humans, this highly contagious viral disease causes hemorrhages which can be fatal within days in wild boars and pigs.

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Many outbreaks have appeared in Europe, first in the East, then as far as the gates of France, which has remained unscathed until now.

"At the last count, 36 wild boar carcasses" have been discovered so far in eastern Germany, Paul Rouche, deputy director of Culture Viande, union of industrialists of the slaughter, cutting and processing.

Prevent the German pork, sold off, from invading the French market

The organization estimates that the closure of part of the export outlets of Germany - the leading European pork producer with more than 5 million tonnes in 2019 - implies that "9,000 tonnes of German pigmeat will now, every week, weigh down the market" of the European Union.

The challenge for professionals is to " contain German imports which will come on the French market" , at lower prices than French pork, noted Mr. Rouche.

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Weak links: processing and catering

In the supermarket shelves, "so far it has held up well" because of the emphasis on the French origin, he continued. However, "imports are starting to come in" in the processing and out-of-home catering sectors.

At the same time, Culture Viande notes that "the absence of Germany (on the Chinese market, Editor's note) will open new opportunities for the other EU countries , as for the major world exporters that are the United States, Canada and Brazil ".

France has so far benefited economically from the swine fever which has decimated the Chinese herd and caused a rise in world prices.

However, China is trying to quickly reconstitute its farms to be less dependent on imports. On the spot, "the prices are around 7 euros per kilo for live pork, it's huge", reports Paul Rouche.

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