July pork exports to China/Hong Kong were the smallest since February, but volume was still up 73 percent year-over-year to 47,701 mt, while value climbed 60 percent to $94 million. For January through July, exports to the region were up 79 percent in volume (332,601 mt) and 63 percent in value ($634.5 million).
Pork export volume to Mexico dipped in July (54,805 mt, down 6 percent), but value climbed 15 percent to $113 million. This was the highest monthly value total of 2016, with unit values up 22 percent, reflecting a notable improvement in ham prices. For January through July, exports to Mexico were down 8 percent year-over-year in volume (379,550 mt) and 5 percent in value ($679.1 million)
U.S. exports of chilled pork to Japan remain on a record pace at 126,394 mt, up 12 percent through July. So although Europe is dominating Japan’s frozen pork imports for further processing into ham and bacon, U.S. exports of high-quality chilled pork have fully rebounded from the West Coast port issues of 2015 and are reaching new heights. Total U.S. exports to Japan slowed again in July to 30,479 mt (down 6 percent), putting the year-to-date total at 223,341 mt, down 12 percent. Export value to Japan was $879.5 million through July, down 10 percent.
Led by strong demand in Honduras and Guatemala, exports to Central America continue to shine in 2016. Through July, exports to the region increased 16 percent from a year ago in volume (36,536 mt) and climbed 8 percent in value ($85.7 million). Exports to the Dominican Republic were also strong in July, pushing January-July volume up 3 percent from a year ago to 15,008 mt, while value was down 3 percent to $32.1 million.
July was a also strong month for pork exports to Canada, pushing January-July totals ahead of last year’s pace in both volume (113,694 mt, up 2 percent) and value ($454.3 million, up 1 percent). Exports to Australia also remained above year-ago levels in July, pushing the year-to-date total to 39,010 mt (up 9 percent) valued at $106.5 million (down 3 percent).
“While it is encouraging to see the strong results in China/Hong Kong continue, the reality is that China’s domestic pork prices have fallen and import demand has slowed,” Seng explained. “That’s why it is so vitally important that we defend U.S. pork’s market share and further expand demand in markets around the world. The competitiveness of U.S. pork is also improving, and this should boost exports through the end of the year.”
Original article September 8, USMEF