High prices as fresh pork returns

Local | Jane Cheung 21 May 2019

Fresh pork is back in markets but at prices 40 to 50 percent more than before a cutoff in supplies. In some places prices were even 100 percent higher.

The action follows the reopening of the Sheung Shui slaughterhouse.

It closed nine days ago with the culling of 6,000 pigs and the need to sanitize the premises after a pig was found to have African swine fever. The Tsuen Wan abattoir was also closed but reopened yesterday.

About 2,900 live pigs were available on Sunday but the auction price was double the pre-closure price, according to the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department.

Of 2,899 pigs slaughtered yesterday, 960 were from the mainland and the rest from local farms.

The average auction price on Sunday was HK$2,653 per 100 catties, the highest this year.

It was also more than double the HK$1,242 per 100 catties set on May 10, the last day of live pig supplies before the two main slaughterhouses were shut.

Yesterday's supply was increased, with the total number of pigs slaughtered at 3,360.

Hui Wai-kin, secretary-general of the Pork Traders General Association, said high prices were due to a lesser number of live pigs from the mainland. He does not expect prices to ease until the end of the week.

"We didn't have any supply of live pigs for over a week," he said. "Mainland authorities needed time to coordinate a sufficient number for the SAR."

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