French pig meat exports pick up in first quarter
In the first quarter of the year French pig meat exports (including offal) totalled 169,200 tonnes, 3% higher than the same period in 2018. This contrasts with the second half of last year, when exports were falling sharply.
This growth was mainly driven by a 23% increase in exports to China, not unexpected given the current situation with ASF. China accounted for 20% of total pig meat exports compared to 16% in the same period last year.
Conversely, according to French customs data, exports of pig meat to Italy fell 11% in the first quarter to 26,500 tonnes. However, it still accounted for 16% of total export volumes. Increases to Spain, the UK and Bulgaria meant trade with the EU still increased 1% overall.
The value of French pig meat exports did not increase as much as the volume in the first quarter, reaching €318.1 million (+1%).
French pig meat imports (including offal), on the other hand, fell 5% year-on-year in the first quarter, to 123,900 tonnes. Although, last year’s figure was the highest since 2015. Spain remained the largest supplier of pork into France, though its share of the market fell to 55% as shipments dropped 9% compared to the previous year. The value of these imports also fell to €374.0 million, (-4%) however, average prices rose slightly.