Russian pork imports in the first quarter of this year were 22% down on a year earlier at 85,000t, according to figures published in BPEX’s Pig Market Weekly.
This is a result of Russia’s blocking of imports of pork from the EU at the end of January, after African swine fever cases were confirmed in Lithuania and Poland.
Shipments from the EU were down by more than two-thirds on the year, despite having been only marginally lower in January.
With a separate ban on US pork imports remaining in force, the main beneficiaries have been Canada and Brazil. Imports from the former were nearly double their level in the first quarter of 2013, while those from Brazil were up by almost a quarter.
However, these increases were not sufficient to offset the decline in EU volumes, with overall imports down by 29% in February and 38% in March, compared with the same months last year.