E.U. faces Meat Market threat

DENMARK -The threat to the E.U. meat market will come from inexpensive South American imports, Meat Processing Global editor Chris Harris reports from the Foss Meat Conference in Denmark.
calendar icon 16 September 2006
clock icon 3 minute read
The European market could become dominated by meat from South America, and when it does--prices will rise.

This was the message from Andrew Cookson, managing director of Gira market research in France, at the start of the Foss meat industry conference in Billund, Denmark, which is celebrating the 50th anniversary of analysis equipment manufacturer Foss.

Cookson, outlining the trends and future scenarios for the meat industry, told the conference that the prospects for growth are good. He said that while the industry is changing world trade in meat, which is between six and seven percent of production, is helping to maintain and push prices forward. He pointed out that for the E.U. market in particular, exports to Japan are helping to support the prices of pork. And he added that the only reason why Brazil is exporting most of its pork to Russia is because it has not been allowed into the prosperous Japan, North America, and Europe markets. However he said that the reforms in the Common Agricultural Policy and freeing up of markets through World Trade Organization (WTO) negotiations could see the European Union and Japan open up to meat from Brazil. However, he said whereas Europe’s cost of meat production is between US$1,600 and US$1,800 per metric ton, in Brazil, the cost of production is just US $900. He added that the situation is similar for poultry meat.

Cookson said that with a few people controlling the main markets at present, the world market is supply driven, but in the future it will be driven by demand. This demand will grow as standards of living around the world improve.

Source: Meat News
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