More of Canada’s pork exports are passing through the United States all the way to Mexico, and continued growth looks evident. With tariffs being removed in 2003 as outlined under the terms of the North American Free Trade Agreement, Canadian pork trade to Mexico will most certainly increase.

Canada’s pork shipments Mexico totaled $33.9 million, Canadian, last year. In the first half of this year those exports have increased 50 percent from the same period in 2000.

Mexico also is the second largest export market for U.S. pork. Those sales are growing faster than exports to any other country, so the Mexican market remains vital to U.S. pork.

There has been increasing talk of a unified North American pork market, but until pork products are actually marketed that way, Canada will continue to be a major rival for U.S. pork. Both countries have low production costs and high quality pork.

Canada has made no secret of its long-term goals to increase production and export more pork. Mexico’s market is just one example of the United States and Canada slugging it out to capture more pork export dollars.