According to USDA, global pork production will increase in 2023, while exports will decline, both of which will be influenced by China.

According to Rabobank’s latest quarterly report on the drop says producers should be more cautious amid heightened global uncertainty as inflation and lower wage power are expected to reduce protein consumption through the first half of 2023.

Pork usually outperforms other protein alternatives as macroeconomic conditions weaken, but this time around, lower consumer confidence is expected to impact global pork prices. Value-seeking consumers are beginning to seek lower value cuts of meat by avoiding branded products, moving to private label alternatives in retail stores and limiting food service purchases.

In anticipation of strong seasonal demand, the processors are building up inventories to meet the slow recovery in the fourth quarter of 2022. However, upcoming holiday sales are expected to test the resilience of the market and its ability to absorb premiums. Lower gross domestic product (GDP) growth projections for 2023 will also constrain market needs, delay herd rebuilding efforts and weigh on trade volumes in Q4 2022 and early 2023.

The expected slowdown in economic growth will also impact volumes in Q4 2022 and early 2023. In the third quarter of 2022, higher pork prices in major exporting countries limited the competitiveness of pork, but pork shipments to most markets supported demand in key markets of South Korea, Japan and Mexico was not enough. Disappointing shipments to China and uncertain prospects for improvement amid the ongoing Covid-related restrictions have forced other markets to absorb the surplus.

Other factors affecting the pork industry include grain and rising feed costs following sub-optimal oilseed yields, which remain near record levels in parts of Europe. and Asia. A Rabobank report suggests that southern hemisphere corn and soybean acreage can alleviate, but not eliminate, feed problems. Supply chain disruptions increase feed costs and volatility and remain a challenge for the industry, indeed all industries. Competition for grain and oilseed inventories and the resulting price increases exacerbate the challenges facing producers in terms of labor and energy costs.

Producer growth plans remain subdued in most regions, with limited sow growth expected in 2023 and a slowdown in global pork production, according to the report.

Global production is expected to decline by 2% in 2022, with little significant growth in 2023 and significant declines in production in key growth regions.

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Source: Rabobank and USDA

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