Poland maintains poultry lead in EU

04-01-2017 | | |
Photo: Paulus Maarsen
Photo: Paulus Maarsen

Poland remains the major producer of poultry meat in the European Union with total poultry production estimated to have risen 15% in 2016 compared to 2015.

The higher output of poultry meat is stimulated by growing domestic consumption and export demand, a recent USDA report concludes. Although the majority of poultry meat exports are directed to the internal EU market the industry and the Polish government are trying to open new markets including obtaining eligibility to export to the United States.

Polish poultry production

In 2015, Polish poultry production amounted to 2,386,000 MT and was 7% higher than in the previous year. The increase of production stems from growing domestic consumption, as consumers substitute beef with poultry which is perceived as healthier and cheaper meat, and increasing exports mainly to other EU member states.

Poultry meat production consists mainly of chicken broilers (81%), turkey broilers (14%) which are in demand for the domestic meat processing industry, and ducks and geese which are mainly exported to Western Europe, mainly Germany.

A low level of prices for compound feeds and continuing export demand for exports are expected to stimulate poultry meat production in 2016. However, it is forecast that due to the reduction of prices for poultry meat on the domestic market and declining export demand production for poultry meat in the first half of 2017 will slow down to 7% compared to the same period of 2016. Poultry meat production is based on locally produced grains (mainly corn) and 2 million tons of soybean meal imported mainly from South America or the United States.

Poultry meat consumption in Poland

It is estimated that in 2016 annual consumption of poultry meat will amount to 28.5 kilogrammes per capita, almost 5% higher than in 2015. Poultry meat remains the cheapest meat on Polish market, which stimulates consumption.

It is forecast that in 2017 poultry consumption will increase by an additional 2% because of higher production and a decrease in retail prices. Poultry meat constitutes 38% of total meat consumption in Poland compared to 55% for pork and only 2% for beef. It is estimated that consumption of poultry from back yard production amounts to 6.5% of total poultry meat production.

Poultry export potential

In 2015, poultry meat exports amounted to 698,970 MT and was 20% higher than in 2014. However, in 2015 the value of Polish exports of poultry meat amounted to US$1.3 billion and was almost the same as in 2014, reflecting a drop of export prices in 2015.

It is estimated that in 2015 some 30% of Poland’s poultry meat production was destined for export. It is expected that exports will have grown in 2016 because of continued demand from the EU and Asian markets. The major export destinations of Polish poultry meat within the EU are the UK, France, Germany, the Netherlands and Czech Republic. Outside of the EU Poland exports poultry meat to Hong Kong, China and Congo.

The Polish poultry meat industry is highly integrated and export oriented. Although the majority of exports are directed to the internal EU market, the industry and Polish government are trying to open new markets including obtaining eligibility to export to the United States. Imports of poultry meat are stable and consist mainly of chicken and turkey cuts imported from Germany, the UK and Hungary.

Growth in eggs and egg products

In 2015 production of eggs in Poland amounted to 590,000 MT and was 0.7% higher than in 2014. Increase of production was stimulated by cheap feed and higher export. It is estimated that in 2016 production of eggs will have increased by another 2%, mainly due to low prices of feed and growing export demand.

In 2015, export of eggs in Poland increased by 14% mainly because of higher exports to Germany and Czech Republic. Germany, the Netherlands and Italy remain the main outlets for Polish table eggs, while Germany, the Czech Republic, the Netherlands, and Denmark were the main outlet for processed eggs. In the first eight months of 2016 Polish exports of table eggs were 8% higher than in the same period of 2015, because of growing sales to Germany.

Rosie Burgin Editor Special Projects