The coronavirus outbreak is already having a severe impact on China’s foodservice and on-trade channels. Also, according to leading agribusiness banking specialist Rabobank, this could become “more serious and longer-lasting” if the virus is not contained in the next six to eight weeks.
But the extent of the impact on Australia’s agricultural sector will be limited in the short-term and will depend on how quickly the virus is contained, it says.
In a just-released report by the bank’s China-based research team, Recent Coronavirus Impacts on Chinese F&A, Rabobank says “disruptions are being experienced across the entire F&A (food and agri) supply chain” with the virus – which has infected more than 40,000 people to date – disrupting trade, production and supply chains as well as having a significant impact on out-of-home food consumption with the closure of many foodservice outlets.
With the virus outbreak arriving at the peak of 2020 Chinese New Year activities, it has had a large impact on out-of-home dining in the country, the report says.
While the report says a quick and effective containment of the virus could lead to a rapid bounce-back, the longer the virus is uncontained beyond March, the more extensive, sustained and structural the impact will be on the F&A chain.