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African swine fever (ASF) is now widespread across China and is having a significant influence on New Zealand's beef market says Blake Holgate.
Rabobank's animal proteins analyst spoke to The Country's Jamie Mackay about how ASF is impacting importers and exporters according to the bank's latest global Beef Quarterly report.
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"There are analysts in my team that have been around globally a lot longer than me - they say this is one of the biggest events they've seen", said Holgate.
"Just to put it in context, China produces around half the world's pork production, so [that's] 54 million tonnes of pork. Rabobank's latest estimate puts the loss of production this year around 30 per cent."
Holgate said that China's drop in pork production is the equivalent of what Europe produces annually.
"So that creates a huge gap globally ... and beef and sheep are benefactors of that".
Also in today's interview: Holgate says the philosophy of "the right tree in the right place at the right time," still holds true, but farmers have to be careful not to convert too much food production land into forestry.