Russian pig farmers have seen a rebound in export supply in recent months after a slump in the first half of 2022. A survey by the Union of Russian Pork Producers (RUPP) shows this. More and more Russian pork ends up in traditional markets in post-Soviet countries, and shipments to Asia are still hampered by logistical problems.

A Russian pig farmer said he exported 130,000 tons of pork in the first six months of 2022. This is 25% less than the same period last year. International sales at the end of October were only 15% below the previous year’s level. This suggests a slight recovery in exports. By the end of 2022, Russia is expected to export 170,000 tonnes of pork, from 210,000 tonnes in 2021, according to the RUPP.

Falling exports to Vietnam, Hong Kong and Ukraine, the main export markets for Russian pig farmers in recent years, have been offset by rising shipments to Belarus and Kazakhstan.

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From January to September, industrial pig farms in Russia recorded 7.9% increase in production. By the end of the year, the segment’s output could increase by 8% or 350,000 tonnes year-on-year, according to RUPP.

On the other hand, backyard courtyards and civic courtyards saw increases of 10.8% and 12.2%, respectively. Combined production in these segments decreased by approximately 37,000 tonnes.

In a previous report, the RUPP warned of export and surplus problems in the domestic market, implying that increased exports could be the only factor that could save Russia’s pig industry from major problems in 2022.

Pork consumption continues to grow in Russia. This has been a trend for many years. Retail pork prices continue to decline. In the first nine months of 2022, pork demand in Russia increased by he 7.8%. This led to an additional sale of 226,400 tonnes.

A portion of the additional sales came from the purchase of hams. Some customers were buying inventory in anticipation of pork shortages in the market. Imports have tripled since the Russian government lifted import tariffs on pork. 13,000 tonnes reached in the first nine months of 2022. At this level, imports will not affect the outlook for the Russian pork market.

Read: International Protein Newsletter

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