June 15, 2021

US pork exports to Philippines more than tripled in January-April period



US pork exports to the Philippines had more than tripled to 39,673 tonnes from January to April, driven by higher volume of pork muscle cut, which benefited from lower tariff rates, the US Meat Exporters Federation (USMEF) said.

"Pork exports to the Philippines soared again in April, bolstered in part by temporary tariff rate reductions that took effect April 17," the USMEF noted in a recent statement.

Citing data by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), USMEF said US pork exports, which includes variety meats like offal, to the Philippines surged by 258% to 39,673 tonnes from 11,082 tonnes recorded in the January-to-April period of last year.

Value-wise, total pork exports to the Philippines in the four-month period rose by 270% to US$99.531 million from last year's US$26.871 million, according to USMEF.

USMEF noted that the tariff reduction imposed by the Philippines only applies to pork muscle cuts, "a category in which US exports were already up dramatically in 2021."

The Philippines lowered its pork tariff rates to as low as 10% as a part of the government's twin measure to boost domestic pork supply and pull down rising pork retail prices.

"Through April, pork muscle cut shipments to the Philippines increased 404% to 33,128 tonnes, with value up 325% to US$88.3 million," USMEF said.

It noted that higher pork shipments to the Philippines contributed to the overall growth in the United States' total pork exports during the reference period. In April alone, USDA data compiled by USMEF showed that total US pork exports to the Philippines expanded by 514% to 14,296 tonnes from 2,326 tonnes last year.

The six-fold increase in shipments resulted in a 502% increase in the value of pork exports during the month which reached US$37.13 million.

Excluding pork variety meat, the US pork muscle cut exports to the Philippines in April ballooned by 613.5% to 12,472 tonnes while its value rose by 525% to US$34.149 million, USDA data compiled by USMEF showed. In April, USMEF told the BusinessMirror that the US is in a good position to supply the additional pork import requirement of the Philippines this year.

USMEF said the US "is well poised to help fulfill any surge in import demand" from the Philippines. It explained that the US pork production this year is expected to grow by 1.3%, which is equivalent to an additional output of 170,000 tonnes. That volume is "approximately the total volume of pork the Philippines imported from all suppliers last year," USMEF said.

"In short, supply is adequate," it told the BusinessMirror.

Even if China's pork imports this year are forecast to remain "very large," USMEF said additional imports from the Philippines "should not put any great strain on global supplies" as there is available pork in the world market.

- BusinessMirror