China logs 36pc fall in April meat imports, as COVID lockdowns bite

 

Beef Central (Australia)

11/05/2022

 

SEVERE COVID lockdowns in Shanghai and Beijing, along with several other large Chinese population centres, have pushed China’s April meat imports one-third lower, year-on-year.

 

China’s General Administration of Customs (GAC) reported meat imports (principally beef, chicken, pork and lamb) for April at 592,000 tonnes, down 35.7 percent from this time last year.

 

The Chinese government is struggling to contain the country’s worst COVID outbreak in two years, with severe lockdowns imposed last month on citizens in Shanghai, and later, Beijing, covering close to 100 million million people.

 

End-user demand has suffered from closure of restaurants and hotels across the country, in an attempt to contain the COVID outbreak.

 

Imports have also been impacted by strained logistics caused by an extended COVID lockdown in the Port of Shanghai, the country’s key arrival port for beef, and Beijing. Long delays are being reported in loading and unloading of container vessels in both ports, and some shipments are being diverted through other Chinese ports.

 

A surge in domestic pork production may have also curbed appetite for meat imports Channelnews Asia reported.

 

China’s meat imports for the first four months of the year are down 36pc on a year before, at 2.26 million tonnes, according to GAC data.

 

Australia’s beef trade with China last month reached 11,730t, down 13pc on the month before.

 

Traders rely on Shanghai’s ideal location for distributing product around the country, but since rise in COVID cases forced a lockdown in the city at the end of March, moving chilled or frozen products around the country has become a logistics headache.

 

In a recent update on world shipping outlook, logistics support company Container xChange said conditions in China were like a traffic jam…

 

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