November 12, 2008
South Korea shifts preference to cheaper meats
As the global economic slowdown sinks in, consumers in South Korea are ditching beef for the cheaper chicken and pork.


At E-Mart, chicken and pork sales grew 11.4 percent and 22.4 percent on-year respectively from January to October this year. Sales of the domestic beef "hanwoo" decreased 0.1 percent while imported beef sales fell 3.3 percent during the same period.


Lotte Mart said beef sales fell 2.8 percent on-year from January to October this year. In comparison, chicken and pork sales increased 17.2 percent and 15.4 percent on-year, respectively.


Lotte Mart said chicken and pork are up to 25-percent cheaper than hanwoo.


However, sales of hanwoo in Lotte Mart increased 15 percent while imported beef fell 15.4 percent, said Na Geun-tae, a Lotte Mart manager. Na said that sales of imported beef dropped because of public distrust of foreign beef, even if it is not from the US.


Large retailers such as Lotte Mart, E-Mart and Homeplus do not sell US beef.

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