If there’s one thing Chinese people love, it’s pork.
The country is the world’s largest consumer of all things pig, with residents of the communist country putting away more than 50 million tons of pork a year. The United States, by comparison, consumes only roughly 10 million tons.
The fat and protein content, as well as the varied cuts and methods of preparation, make the meat an appealing addition to many dishes.
African swine fever, or “pig ebola,” is sweeping across Asian swine herds and causing untold levels of destruction.
There is no cure for the disease. Once infected, entire herds have to be culled to prevent the spread of infection to healthy animals. The pathogen hasn’t made the jump to humans, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t caused heartache and financial ruin.
In June, Chinese pork prices skyrocketed by 30 percent compared to last year, according to the South China Morning Post. That increase is accompanied by a widespread shortage of meat that is sure to only inflate the price in a disastrous spiral.
The country’s communist leaders, in their infinite wisdom, recently released 10,000 tons of stashed pork ahead of major celebrations for China’s National Day, Reuters reported.
Considering the Chinese consume over 150,000 tons of pork a day, this move by the communist regime only accounts for a couple hours’ worth of pork for their people.
Video from China’s Guangxi region shows how desperate some are to catch a good deal on the meat — even going so far as to publicly fight over a slab of pork.
The clip has raised an important question: How can China aspire to be a world power if it can’t even guarantee a steady supply of meat to its people?
“Pulled” pork? These women in China were filmed fighting over the last piece of discounted pork at a market pic.twitter.com/WSEq4r9fG6
— SCMP News (@SCMPNews) September 20, 2019
This isn’t the only instance of fights over pork either.
The opening of a Costco store, the country’s first, saw people so desperate for a deal on the meat that fighting crowds literally ripped slabs of meat apart with their bare hands.
For China, a country with famines in recent memory, a mass shortage of pork is a terrifying prospect.
But while the shortage is a near-catastrophe for the Chinese, it’s good business for much of the world, including the United States. Although China won’t allow pork fed with the additive ractopamine into the country, this still allows a large portion of the U.S. market to compete.
As talks to end the trade war edge closer, China has relented and announced a massive purchase of pork and soybeans from American farmers, the SCMP reported.
With the world’s largest swine herd now being culled to contain a massive outbreak, according to Reuters, it appears there’s no better time for President Donald Trump to bring an America-first deal to the table and finally end this trade war for good.
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