January 30, 2007


Brazil's 2006 chicken exports down 4.7 percent to 2.7 million tonnes



Brazil's 2006 chicken exports declined less than expected to 2.7 million tonnes, or 4.7 percent below 2005 export figures, the Brazilian Chicken Exporters Association (ABEF), said Monday (Jan 29).


Last year's decline was largely due to bird flu in Asia and Europe. Consumption declined as a result.


Exports of chicken cutlets declined 5 percent to 1.6 million tonnes in 2006, with exports of whole birds declining 9 percent to 948,659 tonnes. Exports of cooked chicken meats rose 51.5 percent to 127,245 tonnes, according to ABEF.


Exports declined most in Brazil's main market, the Middle East, with 754,721 tonnes shipped in 2006, a drop of 11 percent from 2005 export volume.


Asian markets declined for Brazilian chicken exports as well, hitting 739,632 tonnes, or 2.3 percent less than 2005 volume.


Exports to the EU declined 9.2 percent to 351,479 tonnes.


Exports rose to Africa by 49 percent to 289,177 tonnes.


"The year ended better than we thought it would," said Ricardo Goncalves, executive director of ABEF.


"We're returning to a more normalised exports. We're moderately optimistic," Goncalves said.


ABEF forecast a record-breaking volume in 2007 of 2.85 million tonnes. The last record was set in 2005, when 2.84 million tonnes of chicken was shipped internationally.


Brazil is the world's leading chicken exporter.


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