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21/01/2020 – News / Agriculture / Meat / Import / ANUFOOD China / China

New data from China points to bright future for meat imports

New data from China points to bright fut

With its rapidly expanding middle class, China’s demand for meat consumption continues to rise – and new official data indicates strong momentum and a bright future for meat imports in the country.

Due to the low level of domestic intensive farming and animal husbandry in China, as well as high costs, the gap in supply and demand continues to grow across the meat sector. 


Impacted by the Sino-US trade war, alongside the African swine fever epidemic, pork imports declined slightly throughout last year – yet other meats witnessed a significant increase in imports. According to data from the Ministry of Agriculture, China imported 1,192,800 tons of pork in 2018 – down 1.98 per cent year-on-year. Meanwhile, beef imports stood at 1,309,400 tons in the same year (up nearly 50 per cent year-on-year); 319,900 tons of mutton was imported (up 28 per cent); and poultry meat imports reached 522,200 tons (an increase of nearly 12 per cent). 


Based on the latest China Customs data, the positive trend continued throughout the first five months of 2019, with total imports of offal recording gains of 23 per cent. Moreover, total meat imports in May last year expanded 63 per cent, breaking a new monthly record by volume since June 2016, with significant growth observed in imports of mutton (up 53 per cent), beef (up 41 per cent), and frozen chicken (up 26 per cent).


The upcoming Global Animal Protein Market Forum – hosted by Meat International Group (MIG) at the debut ANUFOOD China 2020 in Shenzhen from 15–17 April 2020 – invites players and experts from across the international meat sector to analyse the sector’s development and policies in China, and explore market trends and opportunities in the country.

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