Chinese Meat Demand Boosts Chicken Prices

The quest for protein sources in China have shifted from beef, to pork, and now reportedly to chicken from foreign sources to keep pace with their poultry demand. Chicken (spot) prices have been trading near $1.115 per pound which is down about .045c from just last year at this time when prices were at a multi-year high at the Georgia docks.

A year and a half ago, China banned the imports of white broiler chicken meat from the US due to bird-flu concerns – the US providing 90% of China’s supply. China then turned to France for its chicken meat imports, but bird-flu concerns reportedly halted trade with that country and then turned to New Zealand and most recently Thailand.

Gerry Plotkin, a Senior Market Strategist for R.J. O’Brien in Chicago, shared his fundamental view of the chicken broiler market by stating,Chicken prices in Thailand are said to be up a significant 7% in over the past week due to China’s tender.” Plotkin adds,This pick-up in demand is most likely a reaction attributed to China’s reported 20% supply reduction due to breeding stock trade restrictions.”

The trend for chicken prices have been up steadily for the past four years from .86c per pound in April 2011 until June 2015 – topping out at $1.16 wholesale. Since this time last year, chicken prices have retreated back to $1.12 where they are today.

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