US pork price sees upward trajectory

By Georgi Gyton

- Last updated on GMT

According to Mintec, prices are now rising
According to Mintec, prices are now rising

Related tags Porcine epidemic diarrhoea Pig Livestock Pork

The price of US pork has increased by 10% since the middle of August this year, according to data from global commodity analyst Mintec.

Prices sank between June and July, albeit on the back of record highs following the outbreak of the porcine epidemic diarrhoea virus (PEDv). The virus resulted in a high mortality rate among piglets, squeezing supplies and pushing up prices in turn.

Prices then fell from their peak price of around $2,850 per metric tonne (MT) in March this year, to approximately $2,000/MT in May, and then further falling to around $1,900/MT by July due to increased supply and a fall in demand. Prices in August have picked up to just over $2,200/MT.

According to Mintec, prices are now rising, due in part to seasonal demand, but also in reaction to the previously lower pricing which has tempted some consumers back.
“Since the seasonal supply increase, which usually occurs following the summer months, may not meet this demand, supply restrictions are likely to result,”​ added Mintec.

Earlier this month the USDA granted global animal health company Zoetis a conditional licence for a PEDv vaccine. The two-dose inactivated vaccine is licensed for use in healthy pregnant female pigs (sows and gilts). The firm said it expected the vaccine to be available to veterinarians and pig farmers later this month.

Catherine Knupp, executive vice-president and president, Zoetis Research and Development, said: “Rapidly emerging infectious diseases such as PEDv not only threaten animal health but also the livelihoods of farmers.  

“Bringing this vaccine to market quickly – in a little more than a year since the disease was identified in the US – exemplifies our commitment to supporting veterinarians and livestock producers with high-quality vaccines to rapidly respond to and help control the evolving and complex threat of emerging infectious diseases.”

The company is also working with Iowa State University on a second vaccine to help control the virus.

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