News 1214 views last update:Nov 20, 2009

Positive momentum for US pork exports

September's pork exports from the USA continued to perform well in Mexico and Japan. Exports also gained renewed strength in Canada, Russia and China.

These statistics were released by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and compiled by the US Meat Export Federation.

The exports, however, still trail last year's record pace by 11% in volume. In total, September pork plus pork variety meat exports reached nearly 154,000 metric tonnes valued at US$347.8 million, the highest volume since April 2009.

Mexico's September volume surpassed last year's volume by almost 37%, putting Mexico's January-September export volume at 369,376 metric tonnes, valued at $547.7 million – a rise of 38% and 15%, respectively, over the first nine months of 2008.

USMEF President and CEO Philip Seng was quoted to say: “It has been a remarkable year for US pork in Mexico, especially when you consider the disruption we experienced in April and May due to H1N1 influenza.”

He continued, saying: "USMEF worked successfully during this time to maintain our market access in Mexico, and then focused on rebuilding consumer confidence and demand. It is very gratifying to see these efforts paying off and to see the market respond so well to our product.”

The value of American pork exports to Japan increased by 3% to $1.17 billion and, with a strong fourth-quarter performance, pork exports to Japan even could surpass 2008's record value of $1.55 billion. Pork export volumes to Japan is only a touch behind its last year's pace.

Seng commented: “US pork continues to break new ground in Japan, despite the fact that Japan's domestic pork production has increased nearly 6% this year. Our processed items, for example, are growing dramatically in this market. Exports of US sausage to Japan have increased by more than 25% this year."

Exports to the China/Hong Kong region achieved their highest volume (20,569 metric tonnes) since April.

Exports to Taiwan set a monthly record in September (5,790 metric tonnes valued at $9.28 million), due in part to the impact of the recent typhoon on domestic production.

September pork exports to Canada set a new monthly volume record jumping 37% from August and surpassing last September's total by 11%. Cumulative pork exports to Canada trail their 2008 pace by 2% in volume and 9% in value.

September pork exports to Russia more than doubled their August volume and value, and reached the second-highest total (to July) of the year at 17,637 metric tonnes valued at $34.9 million.

Other markets
Other markets showing gains over 2008 include Australia (up 25% in volume and 23% in value), the Philippines (up 17% and 14%), the Caribbean (up 33% and 26%) and Central and South America (up 14% and 18%). US pork exports to all of these markets are expected to set new records this year.

Related websites:
United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)
United States Meat Export Federation (USMEF)

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