Bacon prices could soar after swine fever outbreak in China

By Lloyd Bent
Wednesday, 10th April 2019, 2:18 pm
Updated Wednesday, 10th April 2019, 3:18 pm
Bacon prices are expected to rise following a swine fever outbreak (Photo: Shutterstock)
Bacon prices are expected to rise following a swine fever outbreak (Photo: Shutterstock)

Your bacon sandwich could be about to get more expensive, thanks to an outbreak of African swine fever in China.

Procurement firm Beacon has warned that the increased demand for pork products faced by European suppliers as a result could see prices rise significantly.

The deadly disease began affecting hogs in East Asia last year and was first detected in China in August.

Swine fever in China

Beacon said that the result of the outbreak has been a huge increase in demand from China for Dutch and German pork.

This has meant that the cost of bacon has already risen by nearly 40 per cent over the last four weeks, on top of an 18 per cent rise from February to April.

The company also said that - according to one it its suppliers, Brakes - around 30 to 50 per cent of pig farms in China are believed to be affected.

Ben Charles, of Beacon, said, "Brexit has been a driving force behind the price of pork throughout the first quarter of 2019, but the outbreak of African swine fever has mounted pressure on the market.

“The current increased demand that faces European suppliers makes it increasingly likely that prices will continue to rise throughout the rest of the year.

"Beacon will work closely with its leading suppliers to monitor these increases to ensure that demand does not outstrip supply and to mitigate price increases as much as possible."

No threat to humans

African swine fever is a viral disease that can affect domestic and wild pigs. There is no approved vaccine.

The disease does not pose any threat to humans.

This story originally appeared on our sister site, The Scotsman