U.S. Pigs Will Head to South KoreaTue, 26 Apr 2011 17:49:58 CDT
When pigs fly out of Chicago this June they will be headed to South Korea to help rebuild that country’s herd which has been decimated by foot-and-mouth disease. Tony Clayton, president of Clayton Agri-Marketing, a Jefferson City, Missouri,-based animal shipping business is tasked with getting the animals across safely. Clayton says - the 235 hogs, especially selected for their genes, will travel in three especially equipped 747s. The animals will have enough room to lay down, walk and get water.
In late 2010, South Korea banned hog imports as it fought to contain foot and mouth disease. The disease caused the destruction of about 35 percent of that country’s herd. When added to the loss of about 5 percent of its cattle herds, South Korea has food inflation. It will take the animals about 30 days to get through security and quarantine which is designed to make sure the animals are healthy.
Michael Phillips, president of U.S. Livestock Genetics Export, says the rebuild may require the country to import about 50-thousand hogs over the next few years, many from the United States, as well as Canada and Europe.
China could be next. It recently lifted a two-year ban on U.S. hogs and pork imports, clearing the way for hogs to fly there. Clayton predicts China could buy 10-thousand breeding hogs a year for the next couple of years.
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