Posted 7 августа 2023,, 15:38

Published 7 августа 2023,, 15:38

Modified 7 августа 2023,, 15:49

Updated 7 августа 2023,, 15:49

The reasons for the increase in prices for pork and turkey are named

Running to new records: what is happening with meat prices in Russia

7 августа 2023, 15:38

The reasons for the increase in prices for pork and turkey are named

Pork is getting more expensive at a record pace. In addition to this, turkey meat producers are warning about an imminent price increase. In one case, the impact of import substitution is to blame, and in the other — its absence. «NI» dealt with this paradox and found out what will happen to prices next.

Analysts from the agency AD Libitum warn: the cost of live pigs and basic cuts on the wholesale market last week reached record levels over the past 8 years, that is, for the entire history of such observations. Just last week, marketable pork has risen in price by 7% — up to 148 rubles per 1 kg. This is 20% more expensive than it was at the beginning of August 2022. The shoulder blade has risen in price for the year by 50% — up to 308 rubles, neck — by 40% — up to 500 rubles, brisket — by 39% — up to 215 rubles, ham — by 37% — up to 316 rubles, carbonade — by 28% — up to 322 rubles. Naturally, wholesale prices affect retail prices very quickly. According to Rosstat, pork in retail from April to early August 2023 rose by 4,2% to 314.54 rubles per 1 kg. And the end of the rise in price is not yet in sight.

Overdone the import substitution of pork

Pork production is a rare case of truly successful import substitution in Of Russia. And prices have fallen victim to this success. Until the mid-2010s, Russia was one of the largest importers of pork in the world. But the availability of the technological process for raising pigs and reliance on domestic animal breeds allowed to correct the situation as soon as possible. Already in 2016, Russia got rid of the unpleasant status. If 633 thousand tons were imported to our country in 2010, then in 2022 — only 17 thousand tons, despite the fact that quotas established by the state allow 100 thousand tons to be imported duty-free. Moreover, Russia has become one of the largest pork exporters (ranked in the world TOP 10): last year exports increased by 18% to 146 thousand tons. And in 2023, the year is trying to break all imaginable records: pork shipments abroad increased by another 12% in the first half of 2023, and if you count more bacon and offal, then exports increased by 40%.

But production, no matter how well it grows, still does not keep up with exports. According to the Federal State Budgetary Institution «Center for Agroanalytics», in January–May 2023, pork production increased by 5,8% compared to the same period last year. Maybe we will not eat enough ourselves, but we will feed the whole world with Russian pork! The goal is noble, but it is unlikely to please the Russians.

Manufacturers were able to increase production, saturate the domestic market by 2020, entered the world market and found new foreign buyers. Perfectly! Due to high competition, prices declined from April 2022 to April 2023. But here the export turned out to be more attractive than the domestic market. A cheap ruble (a dollar at 97 rubles) only aggravates the situation. Here it is the reverse side of success and the result of devaluation, which is supported by the Cabinet of Ministers.

Manufacturers work for profit and sell to where it is more profitable. There is a government to regulate the market. But the authorities continue to work based on the realities of 2010-2016 and are trying to regulate prices with duties on pork imports. Only now almost no one needs imported pork. Suppliers cannot even come close to the established limits on duty-free imports. At the same time, there is an alternative way to regulate product prices — export duties. They are actively used to avoid spikes in grain prices. When exports become too attractive for producers and traders, duties increase. Then more products remain on the domestic market and prices go down. However, in the case of pork, such a mechanism does not apply.

Turkey meat goes to record price increase after pork

Cherkizovo Group announced a 6,5% increase in turkey meat prices. The formal reason is the high maintenance costs of equipment (it is difficult and expensive to find spare parts for parallel imports), packaging that has risen in price by 20%, incubation eggs by 19%, and transport services by 10%. And competition for qualified employees has led to a 19% increase in personnel costs.

Other producers will also follow Cherkizovo, since the Mikhailov family's Cherkozovo, according to the Agrifood Strategies consulting agency and the National Association of Turkey Producers (NAPI), ranks second in the Russian Federation in turkey meat production. In 2022, the company produced 80.5 thousand tons of turkey meat in slaughter weight. Only Damate Group of Companies is ahead with 215.5 thousand tons in slaughter weight. The third-place poultry complex «Ural» is far behind — 22.8 thousand tons.

Formally, everything is fine in the industry: over the past 10 years, turkey meat production has grown 5 times, Russia last year became the leader in Europe in turkey production, and took second place in the world. 6% of the turkey meat produced is exported. Officials can tick themselves — the goal has been achieved. But it was achieved, as it turned out, on imported equipment. And this means that the growth potential is exhausted.

Anatoly Velmatov, Executive Director of the National Association of Turkey Producers (NAPI), notes that large investments in the industry are no longer planned — only local new projects may appear. A decline in demand from China and other Asian and African countries is not expected. And this means that Russian consumers have serious competitors.

Now Russians have to fight with residents of other countries for affordable pork and poultry meat. And soon this struggle may escalate. Now China does not buy in Russia has pork, but there is such a potential. The PRC has already recognized France as a country free of African swine fever and allowed deliveries. If Russia gets such a permit, then a huge sales market will open for manufacturers. What will be left for Russians, and how much the scarce meat will cost is a big question, because the authorities do not regulate exports.