In spite of the economic crisis, Russia’s animal sector, including the pig production sector, is showing signs of positive development. Some local analysts say next year’s lowering of meat import quotas will also generate more favourable framework conditions for livestock producers.
Analysts point out rising consumer demand, the impact of various state promotion and regulatory mechanisms as well as the ongoing need for agricultural modernisation all indicate an ongoing demand for the latest livestock production technology. Animal producers are therefore set to expand and further intensify their production capacity.
Evgeny Tikhov, deputy director of the large Russian pork producing company Agrofirma Mortadel, underscored the outstanding role international technology has to play in the further development of animal production in Russia.
“Modern technology, along with high-performance genetics and efficient feed are essential for Russian pig producers if they want to operate profitably and competitively,” says Tikhov.
The state is backing investments in this sector with subsidies. And pig stocks at Agrofirma Mortadel are scheduled to increase from the present 46,000 animals to up to 260,000 animals in the years ahead. To enable this growth to take place, some 20 new piggeries are to be constructed in the near future. Also, Agrofirm Mortadel plans to build its own slaughterhouse and biogas plant.
“We are relying here on production technology and genetics from Canada as well as on quality products from other international providers,” stated Tikhov.
Gerlinde Sauer, manager of the agricultural working group with the committee on Eastern European economic relations says, “In 2009 foreign producers found it more difficult to access the Russian market. This was due in part to the global economic crisis. However, on the positive side, political willingness to promote investments in the agricultural and food industry is still there and cheap prices for land make it easier for investors to back agricultural products is promoting trade and investment in the agriculture and food industry.
“The main thing is to keep up the dialogue and, using sound arguments, to emphasise the advantages of modern technology for Russian livestock production,” added Sauer.