U.S. pork producers are receiving a positive return on their checkoff investment in international markets through the U.S. Meat Export Federation, according to a study by Harry Kaiser, the Gellert Family professor of applied economics and management, at Cornell University.

The economic analysis of USMEF’s Export Market Development Programs seeks to quantify the returns that the pork checkoff programs received from investments in export market development programs. Producer investments account for roughly 50 percent of USMEF’s expenditures on export promotion programs.

"It’s important to producers to understand and quantify the value of their investments," said Craig Christensen, chair of the National Pork Board’s Trade Committee and a producer from Ogden, Iowa. "The results indicated a positive impact of export market development and promotion on imports of U.S. pork."

Specifically, the study found:

  • An average annual increase in net pork industry revenue ranging from $39.9 million to $169.7 million
  • A contribution of 324 million pounds per year to the growth of U.S. pork exports over the past 10 years and
  • A median return on investment of dollars at $7.42 to $1.

The research was conducted using an economic model which utilized statistical procedures to help researchers account for the impact of a variety of factors that affected import demand, including  price of imports of U.S. pork, price of imports of pork from other countries, consumer income in importing countries, exchange rates and USMEF expenditures on pork export market development.

Mexico, South Korea, Hong Kong, EU, Japan, Taiwan, China and Russia Mexico and Japan had the highest gains in imports due to export market development.

The USMEF has been performing market development activities in numerous markets since 1976, with the goal of increasing demand for U.S. pork by improving product image, increasing market presence, promoting total carcass utilization and providing trade support. Nearly 24 percent of U.S. pork and pork variety meat production was exported in 2010.

Source: NPB