Doud: Modernizing Chinese Hog Production Provides U.S. Opportunity

Modernizing hog production in China provides export opportunity for U.S. corn and soybean farmers. Speaking during an Ag Outlook Forum Monday hosted by Agri-Pulse and the Agribusiness Council of Kansas City, Chief Agricultural Negotiator Gregg Doud says we’re already seeing a shift.

“Our new crop year started September 1. We have an all-time record number of sales on the books to China. In fact, if you look at USDA’s projection for soybeans, we have over 60 percent of the crop already sold. On corn, I hope you appreciate and see what we’ve done in terms of corn sales with China, it’s unprecedented, it’s never happened like this before. And there’s a very big reason for that. In all of our conversations with them on these issues, one of the things that they’ve talked about and now I think they have implemented is the banning of swill feeding of hogs in China.”

The banning of swill feeding in China, Doud says, means China needs more corn and soybeans.

“You have to understand half the hogs on the planet are in China, or were before African swine fever. Half of those hogs were fed food scraps, garbage, swill fed. What’s going to happen if China does away with that?  That’s a really interesting conversation, folks, because you have to keep in mind that pigs and chickens are not pigs in chickens in this mind of this Jewell county farm boy, grew up on a hog farm. What are they? They’re little walking piles of corn and soybean meal.”

Doud says export data shows China is making the shift.

“One of the things that we are exporting and has reemerged after African swine fever in China is our exports of whey to China are up nearly 50 percent from a year ago. What do you make with whey? Baby pig rations. So, we’re seeing a big change here.”

Doud added that U.S. pork and beef sales to China, along with dairy, are all increasing, as well.