Expanding U.S. Pork Exports: Opportunities in the Mexican Market

In mid-June, staff from the National Pork Board (NPB) and U.S. pork producers traveled to Mexico City to participate in the inaugural U.S. Red Meat Symposium hosted by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF). The event brought together over 150 exporters and importers to discuss the market potential for U.S. pork and beef products.

Pat Bane, an NPB board member and Illinois pork producer, emphasized the significance of the Mexican market for U.S. pork exports. Mexico is the largest export market for U.S. pork, accounting for 37% of year-to-date exports. From January to April, exports to Mexico increased by 11% in volume to 388,855 metric tons (mt) and 18% in value to $815.6 million. In April alone, exports to Mexico reached a record 107,594 mt, up 34% from the previous year, with a value of $240.5 million, up 61%.

During their visit, attendees observed U.S. pork in various market settings, from wet markets to upscale retail establishments. They also engaged in cooking workshops to demonstrate the versatility and quality of U.S. pork. USMEF’s “American Pure Pork” program, which highlights U.S. pork’s lack of water injection and absence of preservatives, aims to differentiate it in the Mexican market.

The growing demand for pork in Mexico, driven by a rising population and increasing per capita consumption, underscores the importance of strengthening relationships with Mexican importers. With U.S. pork currently making up about half of Mexico’s pork consumption, there is significant potential for further growth.

Immersion trips like this provide valuable insights for both producers and importers. Producers gain firsthand experience of market dynamics, while importers appreciate direct interactions with those who raise the pork, enhancing trust and cooperation.

In conclusion, the Mexican market presents abundant opportunities for U.S. pork exports. The strong relationship between NPB, USMEF, and Mexican importers is crucial for capitalizing on this growing demand, ensuring the continued success and expansion of U.S. pork in Mexico.

For more detailed information, visit the Pork Checkoff article.