Production

Total pig slaughter for 2015 is forecast at 4.9 million while pig meat production is expected to increase to 375,000 tonnes. Overall, there are 1,500 pork producers in Australia producing 4.8 million pigs. Post has forecast increased pork production in view of an expected rise in carcass weight to 78 kilograms and a slight expansion in the pig population. In terms of global competitiveness, the Australian pork industry continues to lag behind other countries such as the United States, Canada, and Denmark.

Trade

Exports

In 2015, Australia is likely to export 40,000 tonnes of pork exports (fresh, chilled and frozen), up nine percent from the previous year. Australia's major export markets for pork are Singapore and New Zealand. Pork exports to South Korea are expected to increase under the bilateral free trade agreement which is now in force. Market opening under the FTA provides for Korean tariffs of 22.5 to 25 per cent on key pork exports to be eliminated in five to 15 years. This increased market access is expected to allow Australian pork exporters to compete more equally with exporters from the United States which have benefited from provisions of the earlier South Korea-United States free trade agreement.

Under the Japan-Australia Economic Partnership Agreement (JAEPA), Australia will gain preferential access for a large volume of pork (more than ten times current trade) via an Australia-only quota. In 2013, Australian pork exports to Japan were only 279 tonnes, due to significant import restrictions including tariffs of up to ¥482 ($5.07) per kilogram.

The China-Australia FTA (CHafta) was concluded in late 2014 and it is expected to come into force in 2015. Under the agreement, tariffs of up to 20 percent on Australian exports of pig meat will be removed over 4 years.

Imports

In 2015, imports of frozen boneless pork are expected to be stable at 190,000 tons. The United States is the largest exporter to the Australian market, followed closely by Denmark. Australia has a strict import regime for pig meat and pig meat products, including specific requirements for heat treatment and de-boning of the meat. Heat treatment needs to be carried out within Australia for products containing bones, such as ham. Imports of fresh pork cuts are prohibited under biosecurity protocols.

Imports of deboned pig meat are allowed into Australia from approved countries and must be cooked before sale under specific import conditions. Due to these biosecurity restrictions, all fresh pig meat sold in Australia is domestically produced. The Australian Government considers that import restrictions are necessary against the animal diseases Porcine Reproductive Respiratory Syndrome (PRRS) and Post-weaning Multi-systemic Wasting syndrome (PMWS). However, in 2014, New Zealand opened its markets to US fresh pork imports and accepted scientific evidence that there was negligible danger of this virus from US sourced imports. Post has actively sought to have access opened for US exports of fresh pork cuts to the Australian market.

Consumption

There has been a long-term trend in Australia towards higher consumption of pork and chicken compared to beef and veal, which are typically more expensive. Australian consumption of pig meat over the decade 2013 increased by over 20 percent. In 2014, higher prices led to a decline in consumption, but consumption is expected to recover from 2015. Both imports and domestic production of pig meat are expected to increase over the medium term.

Currently 80 percent of Australians buy fresh pork annually. Fresh pork consumption is supplied solely by the local industry and increased to 9.23 kg per capita in 2014 from 8.95 kg per capita in 2013. Consumption generally peaks during Christmas but is stable over the rest of the year. Pork products account for ten percent of total fresh meat retail consumption. Fresh pork sold in Australia is locally grown while around two thirds of processed pork products (ham, bacon and small goods products) are made from frozen boneless pork imported from Denmark, Canada and the United States under biosecurity protocols.

Production, Supply and Distribution Statistics

Animal Numbers, Swine

2013/2014

2014/2015

2015/2016

Market Begin Year

Jan 2013

Jan 2014

Jan 2015

Australia

USDA Official

New post

USDA Official

New post

USDA Official

New post

Total Beginning Stocks

2,138

2,343

2,098

2,270

1,986

2,270

Sow Beginning Stocks

225

240

225

240

225

245

Production (Pig Crop)

4,737

4,600

4,663

4,700

4,700

4,770

Total Imports

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total Supply

6,875

6,943

6,761

6,970

6,686

7,040

Total Exports

0

0

0

0

0

0

Sow Slaughter

0

0

0

0

0

0

Other Slaughter

4,777

4,673

4,775

4,700

4,775

4,900

Total Slaughter

4,777

4,673

4,775

4,700

4,775

4,900

Loss

0

0

0

0

0

0

Ending Inventories

2,098

2,270

1,986

2,270

1,911

2,140

Total Distribution

6,875

6,943

6,761

6,970

6,686

7,040

1000 HEAD, PERCENT

Meat, Swine

2013/2014

2014/2015

2015/2016

Market Begin Year

Jan 2013

Jan 2014

Jan 2015

Australia

USDA Official

New post

USDA Official

New post

USDA Official

New post

Slaughter (Reference)

4,777

4,673

4,775

4,700

4,775

4,900

Beginning Stocks

23

23

20

20

25

28

Production

360

360

365

362

365

375

Total Imports

183

183

185

191

190

190

Total Supply

566

566

570

573

580

593

Total Exports

36

36

37

37

37

40

Human Dom. Consumption

510

510

508

508

518

520

Other Use, Losses

0

0

0

0

0

0

Total Dom. Consumption

510

510

508

508

518

520

Ending Stocks

20

20

25

28

25

33

Total Distribution

566

566

570

573

580

593

1000 HEAD, 1000 MT CWE, PERCENT, PEOPLE, KG