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08 February 2022

Meat exports, at cruising speed

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The evolution of Spanish meat exports continues to maintain the positive pace of evolution that has characterized the sector in previous years. In the absence of complete data for the year 2021, the statistics updated to the month of November, prepared based on information from DataComex, the database of the Secretariat of State for Trade, certify this.

During the period January-November 2021, 2,819,310 tons of pork meat, offal and meat products were exported, worth 7,087.35 million euros, representing a year-on-year growth of 5% in volume and 2% in value. Of this amount, 1,736,990 tons were destined for third countries (+9%), worth 4,227.06 million euros (+8%).

As for sausages and hams, foreign sales increased by 5%, reaching 111,270 tons worth 581.03 million euros (+7%). Exports to third countries also grew in volume and value, with 16,460 tons (+12%) for 85.59 million euros (+13%).

With respect to beef and veal meat, offal and meat products, total exports increased in this period in volume and value, with 222,810 tons (+7%) and 879.70 million euros (+17%). Shipments to third countries also increased, with 28,560 tons (+4%) and 95.83 million euros (+5%).

In the case of sheep and goat meat and offal, exports increased spectacularly, reaching 77,260 tons (+38%) for 292.78 million euros (+46%). Exports to third countries also grew, with 15,000 tons (+7%) for 63.84 million euros (+16%).

Finally, exports of poultry meat and offal increased to 183,512 tons (+16.6%) for a value of 307.34 million euros (+25.0%). Exports to third countries also grew, with 72,941 tons, accounting for 40% of sales to foreign markets.

The destinations of the main Spanish meat exports

According to data prepared by ANICE for the first three quarters of the year, sales of pork meat, offal and fat to third countries now account for 68.05% of the total, with a growth of 21% in volume and 22% in value.

In terms of tons, the ranking of destination countries is headed by China (+16.8%), followed by France (-3.5%), the Philippines (+111.2%), Italy (-21.8%), Japan (-13.9%), South Korea (+90.5%), Portugal (+3.1%), Poland (-16.4%), Romania (+3.02%) and the Czech Republic (-11.8%).

With respect to the main third countries, in first place is China, with 2,323 million euros and a year-on-year growth of +16.9%, followed by Japan (377.3 million euros, +6.7%), South Korea (262.9 million euros, +107.6%), the Philippines (191.8 million euros, +181.05%) and the United Kingdom (60.9 million euros, -20.9%).

In the case of processed meat products as a whole (cured hams, sausages, cooked processed products, etc. ), the top ten destination countries for meat products as a whole, in terms of volume, are France (+16.8%), Portugal (+7.9%), Germany (+9.9%), the United Kingdom (-20.8%), Belgium (-8.5%), the Netherlands (+30.7%), Italy (-0.6%), Denmark (-20.6%), the USA (+55.1%) and Sweden (-36.1%).

And in value, the ranking of third countries during these first nine months of the year was made up by the United Kingdom (93.9 M€, -3.5%), the USA (30.79 M€, +51.06%), China (20.4 M€, +113.5%), Mexico (19.5 M€, +39.9%) and Ukraine (11.9 M€, +36.2%).

Meanwhile, beef exports to third countries, which account for 13% of total foreign sales of this meat, fell by -4.6% in volume, mainly due to the closure of Algeria.

The ten main destination countries, in terms of volume, were: Portugal (-5.2%), Italy (+9.02%), France (+6.4%), the Netherlands (+28.9%), Greece (+35.3%), Germany (+51.03%), Indonesia (+51.2%), Canada (-2.8%), Denmark (+23.3%) and Belgium (+78.8%).

As for third countries, the first destination is Indonesia with a growth in exports of +48.01% to 11.9 million euros. Exports decreased to Canada, with 11.3 million euros (-9.5%), to the United Kingdom (8.7 million euros, -13.2%) and to Algeria (8.4 million euros, -68.9%), and increased to Morocco (7.1 million euros, +33.6%).

In the case of sheep meat, exports to third countries account for 31.15% of the total. The ten main destination countries, in terms of volume, were: France (+46.1%), Italy (+35.6%), Qatar (+12.8%), United Arab Emirates (+38.1%), Germany (+78.3%), Oman (+66.6%), Saudi Arabia (+53.9%), the Netherlands (+57.1%), Israel (+52.1%) and the United Kingdom (-23.2%).

As for third countries, the first destination in value is Israel with a growth in exports of +49.9% to 12.4 million euros, followed by Qatar (7.5 M€), United Arab Emirates (6.2 M€), Oman (5.4 M€) and Saudi Arabia (6.1 M€).

Poultry meat exports to third countries accounted for 39.75% of the total. The ten main destination countries, in terms of tons sold, were: France (+10.7%), Portugal (+9.9%), South Africa (+33.3%), Denmark (+77.4%), Benin (+7.9%), Germany (+31.1%), the United Kingdom (+6.2%), the Netherlands (+100%), Guinea (-21.5%) and Ghana (+78.1%).

As for third countries, the top destination by value is South Africa with a growth in exports of +67.7% to €31.5 million, followed by Benin (€14.3 M), the United Kingdom (€9.1 M), Guinea (€4.7 M) and Ghana (€3.1 M).

A look at 2020

It should be remembered that the Spanish meat industry has been making steady progress in its outstanding role as one of the leading exporters in the international meat and meat products market, consolidating its role as a benchmark exporting power.

In fact, 2020 set a new record in the spectacular export development of recent years. Foreign sales that year reached 8,680 million euros, practically 15% more than the previous year, bringing the positive sign of the sector's trade balance up to 800%, a figure that is undoubtedly something to be proud of as a sector. The total volume exported was 3.07 million tons of meat and offal (21.5% more than in 2019) and 200,000 tons processed products (2.6% higher than the previous year).

These global figures continue to be firmly led by the trajectory of the pork sector, which has already established itself on the podium of the world's largest exporters, alongside the United States and Germany. In 2020, 2,130,808 tons of pork were exported, worth €5,651 million, representing growth of 23.5% in value and 23.9% in volume. It is evident that the unleashed demand from China, due to its production and supply problems caused by the African swine fever that devastated the country's pork sector, boosted the sales of Spanish exporting companies that year.

Extra-EU markets were for the first time the main destination for exports (57.3%) of national white-coat pork, with an increase of 25% compared to 2019, according to Interporc data. To this must be added 647,000 tons of offal and pork fat, worth 851 million euros. China was the country that imported the most Spanish pork, representing 47% of total exports, 109.6% more than in 2019. In total, the Asian giant purchased pork worth €3,134 million, up 117% compared to a year earlier.

As for beef, the balance of exports was equally positive both in terms of value, with a figure of 760 million euros and 12.9% growth compared to the previous year, and in tons (199,930, up 4.3%), in addition to 32,835 tons of offal and fats for an additional 49.2% million euros. And in sheep, 43,170 tons of meat and 18,400 tons of offal were exported, with a total value of 221.2 million euros, 7.6% higher than what was achieved in 2019.

In processed products, exports were 200,090 tons (+2.6%) and €1,148 million (+4.1%), a positive but undoubtedly still modest evolution for our most differential and higher value-added products.