Pork Commentary, March 2nd, 2020
Jim Long, President-CEO, Genesus Inc.
We all can remember that the Swine Flu outbreak had nothing to do with Swine, but it certainly hurt pork demand. We have lived through Swine Flu, SARS, MERS, Y2K (all computers were going to quit on January 1st, 2000).
Thank goodness the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) problem is not called swine flu. All you have to do is look at the following data on a survey of 737 people re Corona Beer.
The Survey- conducted by 5W Public relations noted:
- 38% of beer drinkers claimed they would not buy the Mexican beer Corona under any circumstances while the virus spreads worldwide
- 14% of those queried said they regularly drink Corona beer but would now not do so in public.
- The confusion continued as 16% of those surveyed said they weren’t sure whether the Coronavirus was related to beer.
Appears to be a lot of confusion and lack of knowledge in some parts of population. Next week we are going to Mexico on business. Probably will risk it and have a Corona.
We all have seen the big drop in U.S. Stock Market and lean hog futures. So far during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) break, U.S. Exports have held.
- A week ago 42,000 metric tonnes up 18% from the week before.
- Since the 1st of January U.S. Pork Exports are up 91% year over year.
- 2019 =158,043 YTD
- 2020 = 302,000 YTD. An increase roughly of 20,000 tonnes a week.
- Hog slaughter is up about 200,000 a week year to date.
- The export increases are about equal to the increase in hog production.
- China up 400%,
- Mexico up 57%,
- Japan 108%.
It’s really, really good to see jump in exports.
Last year this time 53-54% lean hogs were 51.85₵ lb., now they are 55.21₵ lb. A year ago lean hogs went to 75₵ lb. by the first part of April. If exports continue as is and seasonal hog slaughter declines, maybe we will see the same this year.
The wildcard is Coronavirus (COVID-19) but when we look at Global Hog price, we see mostly increases in the last week. In South Korea, which has been hit by Coronavirus (COVID-19) market hogs have gone from January 21st being 89.49₵ U.S. liveweight a lb. to $1.57 a lb., on February 27. Not exactly declining.
We expect consumer behavior will slow purchasing of non- essential items but food (pork) will not see much shortfall in demand.
In the misery loves company front; Beyond Meat (Fake Meat) lost nearly 20 per cent last Friday. In valuation Peak price of shares were $240 last July. They have now fallen below $100. About $1 billion has been lost in stock value. Current stock value valuation is 221 times expected earnings. At some point someone better eat the stuff.
Focus Group – My son cooking at McDonald’s
- 1 out of 100 are Beyond Meat Burgers. At some point you need to sell something or there is no future.
As an industry our best answer to fake meat is to work to make a better tasting product.
- More marbling in our pork will deliver better taste.
- Taste drives demand.
- Making a better tasting product only makes sense.
Some parts of the meat industry are starting to get it!
At Genesus we have had a concentrated plan to develop better tasting pork for over twenty (20) years.
If every American ate one more meal of pork a month it would be equivalent to 7 million hogs a year.
Scandinavian Farms Drops Danbred and chooses Genesus
It will be pigs from Canadian Genesus, who will play the lead, when the major reconstruction of the Danish-owned Scandinavian Farms Pig Industries starts in China.
You have had pigs from DanBred since you started in China in 2013. Why do you now switch to Genesus?
‘It is an important decision when choosing, which genes to build your herd on. Therefore, we have examined the market and the various suppliers very thoroughly. Overall, we think we get the best solution with Genesus, both when we look at the agreement and the terms, and when it comes to the pigs we get from Genesus.”
Were you not satisfied with DanBred’s pig?
“Yes – the pigs from DanBred have the best genes in the world, and it went well. We had both a nucleus herd with 1,600 DanBred sows that we owned together with DanBred, and a production herd with 14,000 sows and the production of 350,000 slaughter pigs annually. But we have learned that pig production in China is not the same as in Denmark. We cannot expect our employees out here to manage the pigs as we are used to in Denmark. That is why we are now switching to pigs that do not need near the same thorough care to produce good results”
What is it that the pigs from Genesus can?
“With the Genesus sows we get about 16.5 piglets per litters compared to DanBred’s 17-18 piglets. In contrast, the birth weight of the Genesus pigs is quite a bit higher and the pigs are stronger. In Chinese conditions, we believe that it is an advantage with fewer, but in turn stronger piglets, which easier will get all the way to slaughter. As another important factor, feed is 60 percent more expensive in China than in Denmark. Therefore, it is important that the pigs are strong from birth so that they utilize the feed better and reach the slaughter weight faster”.
Genesus is honoured that Danish-owned Scandinavian Farms has chosen our Genetics. We believe the preceding article summarizes the advantages of Genesus.