EU pork exports reached record levels in June with strong demand from China helping to drive the monthly total to 139,000 tonnes, 21% higher than a year earlier, according to AHDB Pork.
Noting that June shipments to China were nearly double their 2014 level, AHDB Pork said demand from the country is “expected to remain strong for the rest of the year”.
“This may be tempered, however, by slowing economic growth and recent devaluations of the yuan,” it added.
Nevertheless, for the moment, the latest figures show that the Chinese market took over a quarter of EU pork exports for the third straight month, a level which had never previously been reached.
“Reduced domestic production has led to higher Chinese pork prices and increased demand for imports, with the EU well placed to respond to this, given the weak euro and plentiful supplies,” said AHDB Pork.
Increased shipments to South Korea, Australia and a range of smaller markets in Asia and Africa were also reported in June while, on the flip side, ongoing difficulties in Hong Kong were reflected in a halving of sales to that market. Japan and the Philippines also bought less EU pork, although in both cases volumes remained well above those in June 2013.
The picture is similar for pig offal exports, with growth in China dominating, offset by lower shipments to Hong Kong and the Philippines.