In the first half of 2020, the People's Republic had become the most important trading partner for pork exports, the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) announced on Wednesday. After the occurrence of African swine fever in Germany, China recently imposed an import ban on pork from the Federal Republic.
From January to June 2020, 233.300 tons of pork were exported from Germany to China. That was 26,8 percent of the total export. This means that exports to the People's Republic more than doubled compared to the same period of the previous year (share of exports January to June 2019: 12,9 percent). A total of 870.700 tonnes of pork worth 2,4 billion euros were exported in the first half of the year. While most pork exports were still exported to Italy in the first half of 2019 (18,0 percent), this year the EU country came in second with a share of 15,2 percent. In the first half of 2020, a total of 2,6 million tonnes of pork were produced in Germany, mostly from commercial slaughter of domestic animals. Compared to the same period of the previous year, this was a slight decrease of 1,0 percent (first half of 2019: -26.000 tons). The trend continued in July 2020: A total of 409.400 tons of meat were produced from commercial slaughtering, the production volume was thus slightly above that of the previous months of May and June, but below the same month last year (July 2019: 432.300). There are fewer and fewer domestic animals available for the meat industry in Germany, and pig farming has been declining for years, according to statisticians. As of May 3, 2020, a total of 25,5 million pigs were kept. That was 3,9 percent or exactly one million animals fewer than ten years ago. The number of businesses fell more significantly in the same period: by 39 percent to 20.400. This increased the average pig population from 795 to 1.248 pigs per farm.
In the past few months, the number of fattening pigs kept decreased. As of May 3, 2020, 11,1 million fattening pigs were being kept in Germany. That was 5,2 percent or 614 animals less than half a year earlier.