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Expanding EU poultry exports could increasingly target South Africa

September 12, 2013

While strong global and EU demand has stimulated poultry production in recent years, in 2013 the trend towards expanding production is slowing down, according to the ECs report, Short term outlook for EU arable crops, meat and dairy markets published in July. This reflects the impact of high grain prices on producer margins, despite poultry meat prices reaching new record levels of 197/100 kg in the EU in May 2013. EU poultry meat exports are expected to peak in 2013, before falling back slightly in 2014. These poultry exports largely target certain African markets. The ECs report notes that only in the first four months [of 2013], volumes to Benin increased by 14% and to South Africa by 8%.

According to the director-general of the Poultry Association of Nigeria (PAN), up to 95% of frozen poultry imports into Benin end up in Nigeria. USDA, meanwhile, reports increasing EU poultry meat exports to Ghana, estimated by World Trade Atlas at 74,000 tonnes in 2012.

The EC reports that the pace of growth seen in the last years in EU exports is expected to weaken in 2014. This is attributed to increased competition on world markets, high production costs and unfavourable USD/EUR exchange [rates] affecting the competitiveness of EU poultry meat.

EU poultry meat consumption is projected to continue its steady development though at a lower rate because of higher prices.

EU27 (EU28) poultry production, consumption, imports and exports (000 tonnes carcass weight equivalent)

2010 2011 2012 20131 20141
Net production 12,006 12,228 12,461 12,610 12,665
Consumption 11,640 11,760 11,972 12,139 12,203
Imports 784 820 825 857 859
Exports 1,149 1,289 1,314 1,327 1,320

Note 1. EU28 forecast.

Source: EC, Short term outlook, 4 July 2013 (see below), Table 6.14