Poultry Sector Feeling the COVID-19 HeatBy Jan Hogewoning | Fri, 05/29/2020 - 08:51
Many companies commercializing poultry have seen sales plummet with restaurants emptied out and overall sales down. While poultry is considered an economically accessible protein, even this sector is now sounding the alarm.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (SADER) has announced it has managed to reduce imports of several foodstuffs, pointing to advances in making Mexico more produce self-sufficient.
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SADER reports it is starting the process of improving reservoirs in six locations around the country. The program is run by its subsidiary Commission for Aquaculture and Fishery (CONAPESCA) with the goal of increasing quality of life of fishermen.
SADER reports that 13,000 foodstuffs producers in the country are certified with sanitary safety standards. This is considered extra important considering the current COVID-19 situation.
The government is deploying more fishery inspection officers who work together with the navy to stop illegal fishing.
According to officials, there has been a 25 percent reduction in field burning in several hot spots in seven states. The government is actively discouraging farmers from carrying on with this practice.
Exports and Imports
Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, Victor Villalobos, has announced that Mexico is decreasing wheat and rice imports. The intention is for zero milk powder to be imported this year. The government credits its Guaranteed Prices Program as the reason for more domestic supply.
The reduction in imports is viewed by the Ministry as an advancement in the government’s agenda toward produce self-sufficiency, writes InfoRural.
The President of the Chihuahua Regional Cattle Union (UGRCh), Eduardo Rodríguez, has reported that in the first four months of this year, 185,810 heads of cattle were exported to the United States from Chihuahua, writes AgroNoticias. The president expects this year to reach similar numbers as last year, despite the ongoing pandemic.
China is banning the import of pigs and related products from India, citing the risks of African Swine Fever, writes Reuters.
Meanwhile, China’s biggest pork producer, Wens Foodstuffs Group Co Ltd, completed the construction of nine new pig farms in 1Q20, writes Reuters. These investments mark new confidence in a sector that saw major devastation last year with the spread of African Swine Fever. They are relevant developments for Mexico because Mexican pork exports have benefited from the devastation in China’s domestic pig farming.
Science and Technology
SADER also reports that researchers at ColPos have been able to create new varieties of corn destined for the Altiplano region. The varieties exhibit better characteristics while also being available at a lower price.
The National Council of Agriculture (CNA) has warned that 20 percent of jobs in the agricultural sector could be lost, writes AgroNoticias. On Monday the council reported its launch of a food donation scheme for Mexican rural communities called Alimentos para Mexico (Foods for Mexico).
The poultry industry is increasingly feeling the pressure from the pandemic as many restaurants remain shut down and sales volumes overall have dropped, AgroNoticias reports.