Bird Flu Is Raging, Adding to the Risks for Food Inflation

Author of the article: Bloomberg News Megan Durisin and Jasmine Ng (Bloomberg) — The world’s poultry farmers are battling another grim spell of bird-flu cases, risking higher chicken prices and fewer free-range eggs. More than 40 countries across Europe, Asia and Africa have seen outbreaks since May, according to World Organisation for Animal Health data.…
Bird Flu Is Raging, Adding to the Risks for Food Inflation

Author of the article:

Bloomberg News

Megan Durisin and Jasmine Ng

(Bloomberg) — The world’s poultry farmers are battling another grim spell of bird-flu cases, risking higher chicken prices and fewer free-range eggs.

More than 40 countries across Europe, Asia and Africa have seen outbreaks since May, according to World Organisation for Animal Health data. It’s threatening to drive food prices, which are near record levels, even higher and boost costs for households that are already suffering from surging prices for other commodities.   

Millions of birds were culled in Europe last winter due to the virus, whose highly pathogenic varieties can be deadly to poultry. Cases this year are rising earlier than usual, forcing countries like the U.K. to order birds indoors to shield them from the disease. The new wave of bird-flu risks making poultry even pricier, with European chicken output already hampered by labor shortages and high feed and energy costs, Rabobank’s Nan-Dirk Mulder said.

“It’s an additional factor that will impact food-price inflation,” said Mulder, a global poultry specialist. “It looks again like it’s a really high-pressure year for avian influenza in Europe and globally.”

A United Nations gauge of world meat prices has climbed 16% this year, and is at the highest seasonal level since 2014. Poultry production is largely adequate to meet global demand, but shipping hurdles and flu outbreaks in Europe and Asia are adding to supply challenges, the UN’s food agency said last month.

Farmers are now in a critical phase as cases of the virus typically peak from October to April. This year’s spread is showing “unprecedented genetic variability,” with a wide range of subtypes circulating in wild birds and on farms, according to the World Organisation for Animal Health. 

Bird Culling 

Poland, the continent’s largest chicken producer, has culled more than a million birds since early November. Danish turkeys and German geese have also been hit, and France recently reported an outbreak in egg-laying hens, after a massive outbreak on duck farms in early 2021. 

The number of birds affected remains a fraction of overall poultry production. But the risks could weigh on farmer sentiment and discourage expansion, Mulder said. Producers raising free-range hens may also be forced to sell eggs as lower-value barn-raised supply, if the birds are forced indoors for an extended period. 

The disease also disrupts trade flows, and the U.S. and Brazil — which top the EU in chicken exports — may grab further market share.

Europe has “tight supply and high prices,” Mulder said. “Taking into account that avian influenza is spreading now so fast over Europe, my view is that this will depress production further.”

©2021 Bloomberg L.P.

Bloomberg.com

Financial Post Top Stories

Sign up to receive the daily top stories from the Financial Post, a division of Postmedia Network Inc.

By clicking on the sign up button you consent to receive the above newsletter from Postmedia Network Inc. You may unsubscribe any time by clicking on the unsubscribe link at the bottom of our emails. Postmedia Network Inc. | 365 Bloor Street East, Toronto, Ontario, M4W 3L4 | 416-383-2300

Read More

Total
0
Shares
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Related Posts
Constellation Software Inc. Announces Release Date for Fourth Quarter Results
Read More

Constellation Software Inc. Announces Release Date for Fourth Quarter Results

Author of the article: TORONTO, Jan. 21, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Constellation Software Inc. (TSX:CSU) announced today it intends to release its fourth quarter results on February 10, 2022. The Company’s quarterly results will be disseminated via press release and made available on the Company’s website ( www.csisoftware.com ) and SEDAR, after markets close on…
Jordan doubles power supplies to West Bank city of Jericho
Read More

Jordan doubles power supplies to West Bank city of Jericho

Author of the article: AMMAN — Jordan said on Wednesday it had doubled the electricity supply sold to the occupied West Bank city of Jericho to 80 megawatts, helping reduce its reliance on power supplied by Israel. They said the extra supplies came from a power station in the Jordan Valley linked to an existing…
BHP to boost nickel exploration spending amid EV boom
Read More

BHP to boost nickel exploration spending amid EV boom

Author of the article: KALGOORLIE — BHP Group will increase its spending on nickel exploration over the next two years to meet growing demand for the raw material used in making electric vehicle batteries, the chief of its nickel operations said on Wednesday. BHP, through its Nickel West unit, has supply agreements for the metal…
Front-Line Workers Deserve Permanent Wage Increases, Not More Spin: CUPE Ontario Calls Bill 106 a Crass Political Ploy Before an Election
Read More

Front-Line Workers Deserve Permanent Wage Increases, Not More Spin: CUPE Ontario Calls Bill 106 a Crass Political Ploy Before an Election

Author of the article: TORONTO — Don’t be fooled by the Ford Conservatives’ saying they’re increasing wages for personal support workers, says the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Ontario. “Imagine the excitement that burnt out, underpaid, and incredibly vulnerable personal support workers in health care and developmental services felt when they saw headlines saying…