Zhongpin Inc., a major meat and food processing company in China, reported that its new Tianjin plant for chilled and frozen pork is operating smoothly after its opening January 20. The company expects higher market prices in upcoming weeks as consumers buy pork for holiday celebrations.

The higher prices are consistent with the rise in demand for chilled and frozen pork as China approaches the start of the Chinese New Year on February 14. China's Spring Festival then will continue for two weeks of celebration, ending this year on February 28.

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Zhongpin's new chilled and frozen pork plant in Tianjin has a production capacity of 100,000 metric tons each year, of which 70% will be chilled pork and 30% will be frozen pork. The plant brings Zhongpin’s total annual production capacity to 541,760 metric tons for chilled and frozen pork.