Contrasting developments in exports from the US and Canada
For the United States, in spite of the PEDv outbreak contributing to a 3% decline in slaughterings, pork exports increased by 14% in the first quarter of this year compared with a year earlier. In contrast, Canadian pork exports declined by 2%.
For the United States, in spite of the PEDv outbreak contributing to a 3% decline in slaughterings, pork exports increased by 14% in the first quarter of this year compared with a year earlier. Reports suggest the increase was partly due to the release of pork from cold stores, with stock levels very high in anticipation of supply shortages later in the year. Mexico increased in importance as the primary buyer, with a 29% market share as US shipments were up 31%, despite a 14% increase in the price. Almost 75% of this trade consists of hams and shoulders. In contrast, shipments to Japan were down by 5% year on year, which can be partly attributed to increased competition from EU product. However, there was higher demand for US pork from some other Asian markets, namely China, to which shipments more than doubled, and South Korea. The value of exports between January and March this year totalled $1.2 billion, up 14% on the same period last year, as the average export price was unchanged in spite of rising US pig prices during the course of the first quarter.
In contrast, Canadian pork exports declined by 2% compared with the first quarter of 2013. The US is the largest market for Canadian pork and shipments were up 1% on the year. However, similarly to the United States, Canadian exports to Japan declined by 10% year on year. On the other hand, Russia continued to purchase more from Canada as shipments, at 35,700 tonnes, were up by 44% on a year earlier and the highest first quarter figure on record. Increasing trade with Russia is a direct consequence of the import restrictions on EU and US product. The value of exports from Canada amounted to C$711 million, up 12% year on year.