Food & Agribusiness Talking Points | 16/05/2018

In Today’s Talking Points: Cargill has ‘significant concerns’ over US-China trade spat; China’s freeze on Australia thaws slightly as trade minister blows in; Seafood giants convene in China for Alibaba’s ‘fresh food summit’; China’s farm produces prices continue to dip.

Cargill has ‘significant concerns’ over US-China trade spat

Cargill, the US Agriculture food giant has expressed concerns about escalating trade war possibilities between Us and China. Devry Boughner Vorwerk, Cargill’s vice president of global corporate affairs, said to US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer that “History has shown that the use of tariffs is unsuccessful in achieving lasting solutions – the current challenges between the United States and China are no different.” As of 15th of May, Lighthizer will be holding three days of public hearing in Washington over proposed US50 billion worth of tariffs on Chinese goods. Terry Branstad, the US Ambassador to China believes the two countries are still ‘very far apart’ on resolving the issue.

Read more at: Just food

China’s freeze on Australia thaws slightly as trade minister blows in

Australian Trade Minister Steven Ciobo will be visiting China this year, potentially signalling a thaw in strained diplomatic relations between Australia and Government. Ciobo will be the first minister in the Turnbull government to visit China this year. At the Australian Business Awards Night in Shanghai, Mr Ciobo is due to give a speech during his time in Shanghai. He has said that “I am not going to paper over the fact that in the past several months the focus has been on the differences. As trade minister, this is my 13th visit in three years and I will be ensuring our relationship with China is afforded the priority it deserves.” The Australian Business community in China has been cheered by the news of his visit.

Read more at: SMH

Seafood giants convene in China for Alibaba’s ‘fresh food summit’

Heads from seafood companies around the world have convened in Hangzhou, China as Alibaba seeks the ‘world’s best, freshest food’ for its online and offline retail ventures. Executives from Clearwater Seafoods, Thai Union Group, Vinh Hoan Corporation, Cargill and Danish Crown, Europe’s largest pork processor, were present. Alibaba had discussed the “the big plan for raising the quality of food on Chinese consumers’ dining table”. Alibaba has been making the push from B2C and C2C on Taobao and Tmall to expand into retail. It has confirmed to open 2000 Hema stores over next 5 years where consumers can buy and cook seafood in store.

Read more at: Undercurrentnews

China’s farm produce prices continue to dip

According to Data from the Ministry of Commerce, China’s farm produce prices have continued to fall since last week. Average Wholesale price of pork, has slipped 0.9% whilst those of 30 kinds of vegetable dropped 2.7%. However, beef prices stayed the same whilst prices of lamp rose 0.3%. China’s CPI rose 1.8 percent year on year last month, compared with 2.1 percent for March, as abundant food supplies kept inflation mild.

Read more at: Xinhua