China’s chicken meat import
China is one of the largest broiler breeding countries in the world and the demand for chicken meat in the Chinese market is on the rise. Since there is limited room for growth in China’s local chicken meat production, China needs to import a large amount of chicken meat every year.
In 2021, China imported 1.5 million tons of chicken meat (including whole chickens, chicken cuts, wing of chicken, chicken claw, offal of chicken, the same below), down 4.2% year-on-year, with imports of US$3.5 billion, up 0.6% year-on-year. According to CRI analysis, in the first three quarters of 2022, China imported 1.004 million tons of chicken meat, down 6.1% year-on-year, with imports of US$3.1 billion, up 24.5% year-on-year.
In 2018-2021, the average price of China’s chicken meat imports is relatively stable, generally remaining in the price range of US$2.2-2.5 per kg. in 2022, the price of China’s chicken meat imports rises to US$3.0 per kg, up 32.7% year-on-year.
In 2021, China imported chicken meat from a total of 10 countries. According to CRI’s analysis, the main sources of China’s chicken meat imports by volume are Brazil, the United States, the Russian Federation, Thailand and Argentina, with chicken meat imports from these five countries accounting for more than 95% of total imports in that year. Among them, Brazil is China’s largest source of chicken meat imports. 2021, China imported 651,000 tons of chicken meat from Brazil, accounting for 44.5% of the total import volume and US$1.5 billion, accounting for 42.0% of the total import value.
CRI analyzes that China’s chicken meat imports are mainly frozen chicken meat. Among the various types of frozen chicken meat, frozen chicken claws, frozen chicken wings, frozen chicken pieces with bones and frozen chicken offal are the main types of imports. According to CRI’s analysis, frozen chicken claws are the largest type of chicken meat imported into China. 674,000 tons of frozen chicken claws were imported into China in 2021, accounting for 46.1% of the total import volume and US$1.9 billion, accounting for 55.1% of the total import value.
China is one of the world’s major chicken meat consumers, and chicken meat occupies an important position in the country’s diet and consumption structure. CRI forecasts that China’s chicken meat imports are expected to continue to rise from 2023-2032.
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