Mexico is contributing to the growth in U.S. pork exports. A resurgence of sales this year in Mexico increases optimism of U.S. pork producers that this market still holds much potential for increased sales, reports MeatPoultry.com.

U.S. pork exports to Mexico slowed somewhat in 2007 due to heavy supplies of domestic Mexican pork that were available there. However, the conditions have since changed, and U.S. pork producers are capitalizing on an important growth opportunity. So far this year, pork exports to Mexico have increased about 17%, as the industry strives to recapture the record levels achieved in this market back in 2006.

"There was a large liquidation last year, particularly among the smaller and medium-sized producers," says Chad Russell, the U.S. Meat Export Federation's regional director for Mexico and the Dominican Republic. "Our exports last year were down because there was an excess supply of domestic Mexican pork in the marketplace. But that inventory has been worked off. So there is less domestic product in Mexico and there's a need to import. They need raw ingredients to keep their operations running so they're turning to U.S. pork."

Although Mexico is a price-sensitive market, it remains a promising region for further growth, Russell says. Already the largest importer of U.S. beef, Mexico is now the third-largest export market for U.S. pork.

Source: American Association of Swine Veterinarians