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Crocodile Meat Threatens to Replace Pork in Thailand

The demand for crocodile meat is exploding in Thailand as local consumers are hit by a spike in the price of pork.

Due to a supply shortage, market speculation and the first official report of ASF, the cost of pork in Thailand is skyrocketing, causing the price of the country’s favorite meat to soar. The rapid inflation has resulted in a sudden country-wide increase in everything from street food to supermarkets, Reuters reports.

About 20,000 crocodiles are slaughtered each month in Thailand for their meat – a figure that has doubled in recent months, Vice reports. This increased demand has occurred as the decline in pork supply has worsened.

Crocodile farmers aren’t complaining. An average crocodile yields about 12 kilograms of meat, and though its different parts can be prepared in various ways, it’s the upper part of the tail that’s the tastiest and is the bestseller, Vice reports. Farmers and those who have tried it say crocodile tastes like chicken.

Crocodile meat retails for about $3 per kilogram, and as low as $2 per kilogram wholesale. Pork, the country’s most consumed meat, according to Statista, now goes for over $6 per kilogram due to diminishing supply.

Reports of confirmed cases of ASF in Thailand threaten to push pork prices even higher, causing more and more people in Thailand to turn to crocodile meat.

On Jan. 11, authorities said ASF had been detected in a surface swab sample collected at a slaughterhouse in Nakhon Pathom province, marking the country's first official confirmation of the disease.

The day before, Thailand denied accusations it has covered up an outbreak of ASF, after a university lab test conducted last month indicated a pet pig had died from the disease.

Thai authorities have for years denied a local outbreak of the disease that has swept through Europe and Asia in recent years and killed hundreds of millions of pigs. Authorities have previously attributed most farm pig deaths to another viral disease, porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome (PRRS).

On Jan. 15, the country’s deputy agriculture minister Prapat Pothasuthon admitted ASF deaths may be fueling the spike in pork prices, Vice reports.

Par : Jennifer Shike (18/01/2022)

Source :

Photo : Matt Hunt / SOPA Images/Sipa USA (tirée de l'article original)

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