South Korea's 2012 corn imports may increase to 6 million metric tons as the country's livestock numbers recover from 2010–2011's foot-and-mouth disease outbreak, according to the Korea Feed Association.
The number would beat 2011's 5.72 million metric tons and join a likely 8.3-percent increase by South Korea's wheat imports, which may reach 2.5 million metric tons. The domestic pig herd is expected to gain to 9 million by September, from 8.17 million at the end of 2011, according to the Korea Rural Economic Institute. “The hog industry is on a recovery path,” said Korea Feed Association director for grain purchasing Kim Chi Young. “Feed output is likely to gain this year, although not rapidly, and therefore grain imports should increase a bit, too.”
South Korea culled 3.32 million pigs, or 34 percent of the total herd, and 151,000 cattle, or 4.5 percent of the total, from late November 2010 through April 2011 because of the animal disease, according to government data.