US pork sales to Mexico reach $2 billion in 2022 - USMEF

Total pork exports up 10% over previous year
calendar icon 15 February 2023
clock icon 3 minute read

Following a huge performance in November, US pork exports to Mexico posted another volume record in December at 90,175, up 13%. December export value was $198.3 million, up 42% and the third highest on record, according to a press release from the US Meat Export Federation (USMEF). These results pushed 2022 exports to a record 959,701 mt, up 10% from a year ago, while export value soared 21% to $2.03 billion, topping the $2 billion mark for the first time. 

Demand for US pork is surging despite heightened competition in Mexico, where imported pork, beef and poultry from all eligible suppliers have entered at zero duty since May and duties will remain suspended through the end of this year. Mexico also recently opened for the first time to Brazilian pork, provided that it originates from approved plants in the state of Santa Catarina and goes directly into further processing.

Pork exports to the Dominican Republic also closed 2022 with remarkable momentum, posting the second largest volume on record in December at 9,466 mt (up 80% year-over-year, trailing only November 2022). December export value more than doubled from a year ago to $28.8 million, up 125%. Exports to the DR set annual records in both volume (85,551 mt, up 46%) and value ($233.6 million, up 55%). The DR also temporarily suspended import duties on red meat and poultry in June, which attracted more Canadian and European pork. But the decree suspending these duties has expired, meaning the US is once again the only major pork supplier with duty-free access while imports from other major suppliers are subject to the DR’s most-favoured-nation rate of 25%.

Pork exports to China/Hong Kong were slow in the first half of 2022 but strengthened notably in the second half. This trend continued in December as exports reached 56,230 mt (up 66% year-over-year), valued at $137.7 million (up 49%). While this was largely driven by demand for variety meat (see below), pork muscle cut exports to the region also increased 53% to 20,522 mt, valued at $55.9 million (up 75%). For the full year, pork and pork variety meat exports to China/Hong Kong were down 26% to 542,443 mt, valued at $1.39 billion (down 20%).

Following another excellent performance in December, pork variety meat exports averaged a record $10.15 per head slaughtered in 2022. December volume was 54,056 mt, up 54% from a year ago, while export value increased 35% to $124.4 million. In both volume and value, December exports were the third largest on record. 2022 exports of US pork variety meat totalled 530,290 mt, up 2% year-over-year and the second largest on record, while export value was record-high at $1.27 billion (up 3%). Exports to China/Hong Kong set annual records for both volume (338,467 mt, up 3% year-over-year) and value ($841.1 million, up 4%), while shipments also increased to the Philippines, Japan, Korea, Guatemala, Colombia, the Dominican Republic and South Africa.

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