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Ag Minister Forecasts Greater Meat Exports

by 5m Editor
10 February 2012, at 7:02am

BRAZIL - The minister of Agriculture, Mendes Ribeiro, said on yesterday, in São Paulo, that 2012 will be a good year for the Brazilian beef sector. While visiting the Brazilian Poultry Union (Ubabef), he said that he forecasts growth in sales to the European Union and China and even the end of the Russian embargo to Brazilian meats, although he recognises that, in this case, negotiation is harder and slower.

To the executive director of the Brazilian Beef Industry and Exporters Association (Abiec), Antonio Jorge Camardelli, in turn, among the Arab countries, Libya returned to importing great volumes in January and there are expectations for sales to Egypt to grow too.

"Libya and Egypt (countries that lived a political transformation) are rationalising foreign trade. The quantity that Libya bought in January surprised us and trade with Egypt is more fluid. There are also open markets in which we should advance, as is the case with Morocco," he said.

The president at Ubabef, Francisco Turra, stated that poultry trade should grow this year as against 2011, when per capita consumption in countries like the Emirates and Qatar grew over 14 per cent. According to Brazil-Arab News Agency, Saudi Arabia was the main destination for Brazilian chicken. Alone, the country imported 622,600 tonnes, which corresponds to 16 per cent of Brazilian sales.

Mr Turra believes that there is still space for greater sales to the region. He also said that it is possible to open markets in Africa and in Islamic countries that are not Arab.

Mr Ribeiro also stated that Brazil may increase sales through cooperatives. He said to ANBA that the government of Brazil is discussing creation of the Cooperative Secretariat, with ministry status. "With it, cooperatives will have greater strength to add value [to the product]," he pointed out.

In a meeting with Camardelli, Mr Turra and the executive president at the Brazilian Pork Producers and Exporters Association (Abipecs), Pedro de Camargo Neto, the minister of Agriculture discussed the Russian embargo to Brazilian beef. He stated that Russian authorities have given signs that they may suspend the embargo, but did not know when this may happen.

Russia imposed the embargo stating that farms in Paraná, Mato Grosso and Rio Grande do Sul do not comply with their sanitary demands. Mr Ribeiro pointed out, however, that the country aims to establish its own market, especially for poultry, with its own production. "We want to recover the share we lost," said the minister.