Ukraine’s major egg manufacturer, Ovostar Union, saw a nearly 4-fold growth in shell egg exports in the first quarter of 2023, the company said in a statement on the Warsaw Stock Exchange.
Export sales of shell eggs totalled 105 million compared with only 27 million in the first quarter of 2022. Foreign markets accounted for 44% of the company’s sales against 11% in the previous year.
At the end of the first quarter of 2023, the company’s total flock equalled 7.12 million hens, including 6.38 laying hens, which was slightly lower compared with the first quarter of 2022 when Ovostar Union kept 7.26 million hens and 6.80 million laying hens.
On this background, the company manufactured 362 million eggs, 2% down compared with the previous year. Strong exports drove overall sales up to 241 million eggs against 232 million in the first quarter of 2022.
In addition, the average price of eggs in the first quarter of 2023 increased by 56% to US$0.139 per egg. In the processed egg segment, no major changes were seen. The volume of eggs processed in the first quarter of 2023 remained at the level of the previous year of 92 million units.
The company produced 406 tonnes of dry egg products and 3,073 tonnes of liquid egg products, against 561 tonnes and 2,131 tonnes, respectively, in the same period of the previous year.
Ovostar Union has not provided any details pertaining to the export geography, but according to the Ukrainian Customs Service, the country exports most eggs to the European Union.
Over the past few weeks, several Ukrainian farmer’s unions warned that the European embargo on Ukrainian food imports would weigh heavily on several segments, including egg production.
Market conditions remain challenging for the company, Borys Bielikov, CEO of Ovostar Union, was quoted as saying. “At the start of the second year of the full-scale war of Russia against Ukraine, the group is working in a highly turbulent business environment. The management has taken all steps to minimise the adverse effects of the current situation on operations, which allowed to keep production and sales at the pre-war level.
“The product portfolio and distribution channels have been reconsidered and aligned with the existing market needs. Under the circumstances, we find the group’s performance in the first quarter of 2023 satisfactory,” Belikov added.