2011 Pork Imports & Exports Take Opposite Turns

by 5m Editor
16 February 2012, at 8:21am

US - US pork exports were record high in 2011, driven by strong shipments to Asia. Imports, on the other hand, were lower than the previous year, and the decline is expected to continue in 2012.

In 2011, China was the third largest buyer of pork. Shipments to China pushed the US 2011 export total into never before seen territory. 2012 exports are forecast to be about the same as last year. Total exports for 2011 were 23 per cent above totals in 2010. The ten largest foreign destinations for US pork last year in descending order were Japan, Mexico, China, Canada, South Korea, Russia, Australia, Hong Kong, Philippines and Honduras.

As usual, Japan occupied the number one spot as buyer of US pork in 2011. According to Japanese data, total imports of pork increased by 5 per cent. While purchases from the US's major competitors - Canada and Denmark - dropped, imports from the US rose.

Mexico too held it's usual spot as the number two US pork buyer. However, compared to 2010, the country's purchases of US were relatively flat in 2011.

US imports in 2011 were 7 per cent lower than a year earlier, and are expected to continue to decline by roughly 2 per cent in 2012. Lower exchange rate values throughout 2011 made pork from Canada less competitively priced than in the past. According to the USDA's Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook, total 2012 imports are expected to be almost 2 percent lower than last year.

USDA expects 2012 pork imports and exports to remain unchanged in February.

Further Reading

- You can view the Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook report by clicking here.