Russian pork imports declined by 22%, year-on-year, during the first nine months of 2015, according to AHDB Pork.
Total pork imports by Russia from January to September 2015 amounted to 212,000 tonnes. This compares with 273,000 tonnes in the same period in 2014 and 453,000 tonnes in 2013, before the country’s pigmeat trade bans began.
“With restrictions preventing imports from the EU, US and Canada, amongst others, remaining in place, Russia turned to Brazil and Ukraine to meet its domestic demand for pork,” said AHDB Pork, adding that Brazil has maintained its position as the dominant supplier of pork to the country.
“Shipments from Ukraine also increased significantly, with volumes totalling over 20,000 tonnes, setting a new record. However, there is doubt about whether this increase will continue into 2016, as Russia have stated that it will cease the importation of Ukrainian pork if a trade agreement between the EU and the Ukraine is implemented.”
Ironically, despite the nine-month decline in Russian imports, figures for the third quarter of 2015 show a 15% rise on the year. As a result, the third quarter registered the largest volume of imports for a quarter since the beginning of 2014, when the first ban on EU pork was introduced.