More Brazilian processing plants are being certified to export poultry meat to China, expanding the bilateral trade relationship between the two countries.
Brazil is the world's largest exporter of poultry and the increasing demand in China has resulted in a rise in imports. However, not all Brazilian slaughterhouses are allowed to export to China, because some of them have yet to implement the technical and hygienic procedures required to obtain a green light from Chinese regulators.
Therefore, Brazil's current output, most of which has already been sequestered by other countries, is unable to satisfy orders from Chinese dealers, said Adriano Zerbini, market relations manager of the Brazilian Poultry Association (UBABEF), the country's largest poultry industry organization.
In 2004, Brazil and China signed a hygiene agreement for poultry, allowing trade to flourish. Since 2009, 24 out of Brazil's 48 poultry exporting facilities have obtained certification from the Chinese authorities.
Analysts said the poultry business is a microcosm of trade between China and Brazil. They are two major emerging-market economies and could prove crucial for the ongoing global economic recovery, especially at a time when Europe is suffering a sovereign debt crisis and the US economy remains fragile with uncertain prospects.
Brazilian poultry, which the UBABEF said boasts integrated production methods and high standards of hygiene and technological support, can easily meet the increased demand from China. However, Chinese buyers need to have a deeper understanding of Brazilian products prior to making their orders, said Ricardo Joao Santin, markets director of the UBABEF.
He said a Chinese delegation may visit Brazil in March 2012 to assess production conditions in the poultry industry and decide whether to allow more imports from the country.
At present, Brazilian poultry exports to the Chinese mainland account for less than 5% of the country's total poultry exports. "We estimate our poultry exports to China could expand to between 180,000 and 200,000 tonnes this year, from 120,000 tonnes in 2010, doubling its proportion within our total exports," said Santin.
Source: China Daily