Pork price has surged this year due to a supply shortage caused mostly by epidemic diseases, rising feed prices and exorbitant interest rates, Hoang Kim Giao, head of the Animal Husbandry Department said in an interview with Tuoi Tre on July 14.
Giao said pork price in July has soared by 70 to 100 percent over the same period last year and is foreseen to continue to rise by the end of this year.
The pork market is seeing a severe supply shortage, in which many pig farmers have to reduce their production or even stop breeding due to three main causes, he said.
He attributed the first cause to the disease outbreak in late 2010 and early this year, which have reduced the total pig herd by 3.7 percent.
The total sow herd also dropped by 8.6 percent, hiking breeder prices, which he said is the second cause for the rising pork prices.
He said the hike in input costs, including feeds, breeders, and production maintenance have also pushed output prices higher.
Finally, the exorbitant lending rates have prevented small pig firms and farmers from accessing banks’ loans, while putting a harsh financial pressure on the major ones, he said.
“The traders have also contributed to sending pork prices to skyrocket,” he said. “The live pig fetches only VND60,000 (US$3) a kg, but traders boost pork price to VND100,000 ($5).”
Such difficulties plus the concerns over diseases and natural disasters have caused huge losses to many pig farmers.
He said 20 percent of farmers in the northern Ha Nam Province have given up pig breeding, while the ratio is only 10 percent in the central northern provinces of Nghe An, Thanh Hoa and Hung Yen.
Admitting that pork prices have no chance to decrease by this year end, Giao emphasized the necessity of keeping prices from surging further.
He said the most crucial step is to revitalize the pig farming industry to solve the supply shortage.
He also urged the Department of Animal Health to try its best to protect the pigs from diseases, and demanded special policies from the government to support pig farmers.
“The government should have a price stabilization policy for livestock farming industry and should order banks to charge reasonable lending rates for pig farmers,” he said.