Imports of pork were down four per cent for January to March compared with the same period of 2011. The fall was largely due to a 72 per cent fall in shipments from Brazil, which was previously the largest supplier of pork to Russia. Restrictions on pork imports from Brazil imposed back in June 2011 are still adversely affecting trade. The reduction in shipments from Brazil has created opportunities for other countries particularly in North America and the EU.
There was growth in imports from Canada, the US and the Ukraine up 56 per cent, 62 per cent and 41 per cent respectively. Russia has eliminated the country-specific quota that was open only to US pork, but this will allow the US to participate in the 400,000 tonnes TRQ that is open to all countries. Of the smaller markets trade with Chile increased three-fold to 1,600 tonnes. Pork shipments from the EU were up 10 per cent, with a 19 per cent increase in imports from Germany and shipments from Spain more than doubling. There was also growth from smaller suppliers such as Ireland and Austria, although volumes were still only 3,000 tonnes and 1,000 tonnes respectively. The overall average unit price of Russian pork imports was up 10 per cent in US dollar terms at $3,370 per tonne and by 13 per cent in roubles.
Russian fresh and frozen pork imports in 2012 will be constrained by the reduction in the tariff quota to 400,000 tonnes, down from 472,100 in 2011. For fresh and frozen beef it is unchanged at 560,000 tonnes.
June 2012/ BPEX