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Global number of pigs 2012-2020

Pigs are one of the most commonly raised animals in the world. They are the primary protein source for millions of people across numerous different cultures and geographical regions. As of January 2020, there were about 677.6 million of pigs worldwide, decreasing from 767.6 million heads in the previous year.

International trade

Although China produces the highest number of pigs of any country, the European Union leads the world in terms of pork exports, exporting over three million metric tons of pork in 2018. The United States is the second largest exporter of pork, at about 2.7 million metric tons. There is a high level of demand for pork in China, which cannot be satisfied by domestic production. In 2017, China imported 1.62 million metric tons of pork, making it the top importer of pork as well as the top producer.

Consumption in China

Pork features heavily in a large number of traditional Chinese dishes, and thus is widely consumed and sought after in China. As China continues to prosper and expand economically, the amount of meat in the daily meals of consumers in China is expected to increase. In 2016, about 24.8 million metric tons of pork products were sold in China, this figure is projected to grow to about 26.7 million by 2021.

Number of pigs worldwide from 2012 to 2020 (in million head)**

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Release date

January 2020



Survey time period

2012 to 2020

Supplementary notes

*Total beginning stocks.

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