As director of the ASEAN region, Sabrina Yin oversees marketing and regulatory activities for the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) in a number of emerging markets in Southeast Asia. This includes Cambodia, which recently established a formal meat trade protocol with the United States.
Although it was already legal for U.S. beef and pork to be imported into Cambodia, Yin says the new protocol will offer importers a simpler, smoother process and could help give them access to a wider range of U.S. suppliers.
In 2012, U.S. beef exports to Cambodia totaled 130 metric tons valued at $1.12 million. Through September, this year’s exports had already reached 170 metric tons valued at $1.8 million. Although a much smaller market for imported pork, the U.S. pork industry has posted direct pork exports to Cambodia for the first time this year (through September, 1 metric ton valued at $2,900).
While Cambodia has a population of 15 million and a per capita GDP of only $2,400, Yin explains that there are opportunities for the U.S. industry to serve Cambodia’s growing tourism sector and its large expatriate population – especially natives of Japan and Korea who are familiar with the attributes of U.S. meat products.