Cuban imports of poultry meat from the US increased 41.7% in 2021 in relation to the previous year. According to the news site 14ymedio, Economic and Commerce Conceal US-Cuba presented this data last week. The Caribbean country’s domestic production has declined by 92% since the 1990s.
Cuba is not self-sufficient in poultry production because the regime controls the entire sector, which is dedicated to producing mainly eggs. Currently, they produce around 9,500 tonnes of meat that come primarily from old layers.
During the 1990s, Cuba produced about 120,000 tonnes of poultry (92.1% less). In April, it had been a year since the approval by the island´s government of a package of 63 measures to stimulate agriculture. However, in the report on agricultural performance presented by the minister in March, he described that in 32 of 37 facilities, the goals had not been accomplished.
The US is the main supplier of chicken to Cuba, “a fact that the Cuban government never publishes that it often uses the blockade to justify the economic crisis and scarcity in the country,” 14ymedio said.
The sector’s management oversees the Ministry of Agriculture of Cuba through the Livestock Business Group. There are farmers and private cooperatives that produce chicken meat, although on such a small scale that it is not very representative. National production is also very small and is destined for local consumption.
Cuban economist Pedro Monreal published on Twitter: ‘the monthly tonnes of chicken meat exported by the US to Cuba in February 2022 reached the third highest historical record of the last 2 decades (31,212 tonnes), only surpassed by the “peaks” of July 2019 and March 2021.”
According to him, the US exported a total of 2.78 million tonnes of chicken meat to Cuba between 2001 and 2021. This amount means 250 kg per person in 20 years, 12 kg per year, and 1 kg per month, some 40% of the total tonnes Cuba has bought only in the last 5 years (2017-2021).