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Brazilian Exports: Poultry Falls, Pork Rises

by 5m Editor
22 February 2010, at 11:38am

BRAZIL - The volume of poultry exports were 15 per cent lower in January than the same month in 2009, while pork exports were three per cent higher.

Brazil's poultry exports were 15 per cent lower last month than January 2009 – totalling 233,000 metric tons – according to the Brazilian poultry producers Association, Abef.

Progressive Farmer reports that poultry sales were down mostly due to weaker demand from neighbouring Venezuela, which purchased 77 per cent less poultry last month than in January 2009 as the country used stocks built up during the first half of last year.

Brazil's poultry exports fell 16 per cent in revenue terms last year, while volume was unchanged at 3.63 million tonnes. According to Abef, last year's performance suffered as the global financial crisis weakened demand and lowered prices. Exports also suffered due to a stronger local currency, which makes the country less competitive on the international market.

Meanwhile, pork exports were up last month, totalling 39,000 tonnes or three per cent higher than the same period last year, according to the Brazilian pork producers association, known as Abipecs. Russia was Brazil's main customer last month, importing 21,000 tonnes of pork.

Brazil hopes pork exports this year will increase by at least five per cent on last year's volume of 607,000 tonnes, which was impacted by the H1N1 virus. There is also optimism in relation to the opening of the Chinese market, announced in December. Brazilian beef and port exports to China had been blocked for a number of years due to concerns over foot and mouth disease.

However, Brazilian beef and pork producers still need to obtain individual certification from Chinese sanitation authorities before being allowed to export. China is the largest pork market in the world, responsible for around 40 per cent of demand.

Pork and poultry production and exports have a strong impact on the local corn and soybean markets. Brazil produced a record winter corn crop last season and is on track to repeat that again this season, according to Progressive Farmer. Sluggish local demand and high carry over stocks, however, means prices are currently below the cost of production in most regions of the country.