Pig Farms Sprouting across Russia despite Oversupply

Several new large pig production facilities are being built in Russia despite the fact that self-sufficiency has almost been reached and in some cases there is an oversupply, Kommersant business daily reported.

The combined worth of the pig farms currently under construction in Russia reaches a hefty $3.3 billion and the production capacity is roughly 1 million tonnes of pork in live weight. This estimate was shared by Yuri Kovalev, chairman of the Russian Union of Pork Producers (RUPP). Most of the projects are expected to begin commercial operation by 2022.

According to Kovalev, a certain degree of surplus pork can already be seen on pork markets in virtually all regions of Russia. In 2017, the pork self-sufficiency rate of Russia was estimated to be at 95%. In addition, there are still some import supplies that meet a small share of the domestic demand.

In April, Russia’s pork producers reacted to strongly against a new environmental bill which, once adopted, would force many swine farmers and slaughterhouses to invest large amounts of money to renovate their operations.

According to the newest ecological standards, that are likely to come into force in January 2019, 78% pig farms and all pig slaughterhouses in Russia shall be seen as industrial facilities with the highest level of danger to the environment.

The government regulations determining the technical parameters are yet to be adopted. Yet it is widely believed that this will mean that all these pig farmers will have to apply ‘the best available technologies’ in terms of sanitary safety, cutting emissions as much as possible. Hence the situation may lead to a heavy financial burden for many players in the pig business.