An official of the agriculture ministry stated that the coronavirus outbreak in China acted as a major cause in the delay of the launch of new pig facilities and has further put pressure on pork supplies and prices, on Sunday.
The deputy director at the Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Bureau of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, Kong Liang, stated that the coronavirus outbreak has caused disruption in the supply of vital feed and veterinary medicine and also delayed the return of agricultural workers to farms.
China has imposed halts on the movement of goods from Wuhan
To contain the spread of the virus, China has imposed halts on the movement of people and goods from Wuhan, the epicentre of the outbreak and the capital of Hubei province, which is also under lockdown, as well as other regions with cases of the disease. "Looking at it from a market perspective, due to the regional blockades, pork supplies in some places are tight, and prices have risen by a certain extent," Kong told reporters.
China's pork supplies were reduced by as much as 21.3 percent in 2019 as a result of an African swine fever outbreak that forced authorities to slaughter as many as 390,000 pigs, Kong said. The latest crisis has interrupted state-led efforts to revive the industry. China has released 10,000 tonnes of frozen pork from its strategic reserve for use in Hubei. It is also aiming to raise imports to alleviate shortages.