Highest UK pork exports in 15 years
Latest trade figures showed that UK pork exports in March were at their highest level since October 1998. In addition, exports to China/Hong Kong topped 5,000 tonnes for the first time ever (with shipments to China at a record 3,300 tonnes).
Latest trade figures showed that UK pork exports in March were at their highest level since October 1998. The total was just shy of 18,200 tonnes, 13% up on the same month in 2013. In addition, exports to China/Hong Kong topped 5,000 tonnes for the first time ever (with shipments to China at a record 3,300 tonnes). The proportion of total pork exports shipped to the EU fell but volumes grew by 7% compared with March 2013. While supplies to Germany dropped by 8% on the year and shipments to Ireland were little changed, many other EU markets took significantly more UK pork than last March. However, the value of pork exports fell by 3% to £19.8 million, partly due to the stronger pound but also reflecting the lower value of cuts exported to non-EU markets. Despite a higher requirement from China and Hong Kong, offal exports dropped by 30% on the year during March, to 4,000 tonnes, due to much lower exports to EU markets.
Pork imports also increased in March, up 7% compared with the year earlier at 29,500 tonnes. With the exception of Denmark, whose shipments came down by 16% on the year, trade with other key suppliers rose. Germany became the leading provider of exports, increasing shipments by 26% compared with March 2013. Imports from the Netherlands and France also rose, by 8% and 17% respectively. As a result of lower prices, the value of imports in March totalled £56.5 million, only marginally up from a year previously. There was also 4% more bacon imported in March compared with March 2013. Demand for imported sausages also increased by 13% on the year, with higher supplies from across the continent but other processed imports declined by 6% year on year.