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U.S. Broiler and Turkey Exports for January 2017


Mar 15, 2017


Continued Improvements in Volume and Value Compared to 2016.

Data for January 2017 indicated an improvement in export volume after lifting of embargos following the 2015 Midwest HPAI outbreak and the subsequent limited January 2016, Indiana and May 2016, Missouri “pop-up” cases.  Broiler meat exports in January 2017 attained 252,485 metric tons, 12.2 percent higher than in January 2016 (225,062 metric tons)


During January 2017 the National Chicken Council, citing USDA-FAS data, documented exports of 269,929 metric tons of chicken parts and other forms valued at $255 million with an average unit value of $944 per metric ton, almost identical with January 2016 ($946).

The breakdown of chicken exports by proportion and unit price for each broiler category for January 2017 compared with the corresponding month in 2016 with the price in parentheses comprised:-

  • Chicken parts                          95.3%;  Unit value $890 per metric ton   ($861)
  • Prepared chicken                      2.8%;  Unit value $3,633 per metric ton ($3,557)
  • Whole chicken                          1.9%;  Unit value $971 per metric ton    ($1,411) 







The following table prepared from USDA data circulated by the USAPEEC, compares values for poultry meat exports for 2016 with corresponding figures for 2015:-



PRODUCT                                  January 2016        January 2017             Difference

Broiler Meat

Volume  (metric tons)                    225,062                252,485               +27,432  (+12.2%)

Value     ( $ million)                              205                       229                      +24  (+11.7%)

 Unit value ( $/m. ton)                           911                       907                         -4   (--0.4%)

Turkey Meat

Volume  (metric tons)                      15,405                    19,417                 +4,012 (+26.0%)

Value     ($ million)                                36                           43                        +7 (+19.4%)

 Unit value ($/m. ton)                        2,387                      2,215                       -122 (- 5.2%)

 Chicken Paws

 Volume   (metric tons)                    11,135                    12,014                    +879 (+7.9%)

  Value      ( $ million)                            13                           17                       +4 (+30.8%)

  Unit value ($/m. ton)                        1,167                     1,415                    +248 (+21.3%)      


Total broiler exports for January 2017 compared with the corresponding month in 2016 increased by12.2 percent in volume but increased 11.7 percent in value. This is attributed to a 0.4 percent decline in unit value from $911 per metric ton to $907 per metric ton. The U.S. broiler industry sells leg quarters, an undifferentiated commodity, in a reduced and price-sensitive market against competition from other exporters and against domestic production in importing nations. The gain in value of the U.S. Dollar relative to the currencies of Brazil and Thailand has added to the pressure of HPAI embargos on exports. 

The top five importers of broiler meat represented 41.1 percent of shipments during January 2017. The top ten importers contributed 57.6 percent of volume. 

Mexico was the largest importer of broiler meat during January 2017 with 20.0 percent of volume and 17.6 percent of total value and with a unit value of $1,083 per metric ton.

There is a consistent and extensive expansion of the nine, second-tier nations importing broilers with volumes ranging from 35,000 to 80,000 m. tons. This is attributed to the promotional activities of the USAPEEC and their regional representatives cooperating with traders.

The volume of turkey meat exported during January 2017 increased by 26.0 percent and value rose by 19.4 percent compared to January 2016 but there was a reduction in unit value of 5.2 percent to $2,215 per metric ton.

Exports of chicken paws increased in total volume by 7.9 percent during January 2017, with a corresponding increase in value of 30.8 percent due to a 21.3 percent increase in unit value to $1,415 per ton. Hong Kong imported 98.0 percent of shipments. This trade was impacted by the unjustified blanket embargo imposed by China at the beginning of May 2015. This action included all imports from the entire U.S. following outbreaks of H5N2 strain avian influenza in turkey grow-out operations, egg-producing complexes, non-commercial farms and wild birds in the Northwest and North Central states. These areas were completely separated from regions with broiler production.

The 2015 isolation of LPAI H5 in live bird markets on the East Coast and recently from a  turkey farm in Tennessee, coupled with a rapidly-diagnosed and depleted case of HPAI in an isolated broiler breeder farm in the same state should not affect the volume of exports going forward. This is contingent on importers following the World Organization of Animal Health (OIE) policy on regionalization. The live-bird market system and migratory birds represent an ongoing danger to the entire U.S. commercial industry and its exports.


Copyright 2017 Simon M. Shane