Ukrainian pig industry must shift to export
The Ukrainian pork industry must start exporting its products as soon as possible in order to avoid a flood of bankruptcies. At the moment, domestic producers are suffering heavy losses and may very well go bankrupt if they can't sell their products abroad, says Irina Palamar, the managing partner of Agrovet Atlantik, one of the leading producers of nutrition components for farm livestock in Ukraine.
According to Palamar, the drop of the exchange rate and the rapid devaluation of the Ukrainian hryvnia in the next few months can ruin the pig industry in the country: "Firstly, the pig industry is completely dependant on domestic consumption. Secondly, today, 1 kg of pork costs less than US$ 1 (UAH 21-25 per kg in live weight, depending on the region). In such circumstances, it is impossible to run a business, so small farmers are likely to decrease their pig population in order to avoid bankruptcy.
She added that feed makes up for about 70 percent of the production costs, and most wheat, the main component of pork feed, is being produced in Ukraine. "At the same time it is more profitable for domestic farms to sell their wheat abroad. Next to that vitamins are being purchased in euros, so they have become much more expensive." Palamar says the government should support the pork industry in establishing export on a large scale, to European and the Chinese market.