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China pig cull tops 20,000 as African swine fever crisis deepens

Staff Writer | August 22, 2018
China's pig cull topped 20,000 animals on Wednesday as officials try to halt an outbreak of deadly African swine fever (ASF) in the world's largest pig market.
Asia   National hog prices hit a three-week low
Nearly 15,000 hogs have been culled in Lianyungang city in eastern Jiangsu province as of Aug. 20, local authorities said, after the third case of the highly contagious disease was found at the weekend, the third in two weeks.

China's first reported outbreaks of ASF - a disease for which there is no vaccine - have stoked concerns about its spread and potential damage to demand for pork, a staple of the nation's diet.

National hog prices, which had been recovering from four-year lows struck in May, hit a three-week low at 13.71 yuan ($1.99) a kilogram on Wednesday and are down 7.2 percent year-on year, according to consultancy China-America Commodity Data Analytics.

The price fall has added to financial pain for farmers who have been left struggling after a rapid expansion of capacity led to oversupply and sinking prices. At the same time, the U.S.-China trade row has pushed up the cost of livestock feed.