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Colombia's demand for U.S. red meat continues to expand

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Inflation is challenging the spending power of Colombian consumers, but meat demand has been very resilient.

After a slow start to the year U.S. pork exports to Colombia rebounded strongly in the second quarter, and are now 10% ahead of last year's record pace. Beef exports are also soaring, up 55% in volume and 78% in value over 2021. U.S. Meat Export Federation representative Don Mason says U.S. red meat has a growing presence in Columbia's rapidly expanding retail sector.

"The consumption of pork on a per capita basis in Colombia has grown to almost 12 kilos per person per year and so tremendous growth in that demand for pork. They have a domestic industry that is trying to help keep up with that demand, but they can't do it. I mean, they don't have the capacity to expand that fast. And so every year, we've essentially been able to grab more and more market share because we're filling a bigger and bigger hole. We're essentially adding on to what the domestic industry does, and filling that hole and consumer demand, but great consumer demand on the pork side," Mason says.

"On the beef side, we've got some kind of interesting things going on right now. Our beef market used to be a lot of variety, meats, liver, tripe, that sort of thing. In the past three or four years, we've seen more and more muscle cuts going in there. And then over the past two years, lots of ground beef, because there's a hamburger craze in Colombia and hamburger shops popping up all over, and they love U.S product for their hamburgers."

As in many countries, inflation is challenging the spending power of Colombian consumers, but meat demand has been very resilient.

"Much of that in the food sector, much of that and meat is certainly a part of that, and so, you know, that's that's an issue," Mason says. "But I think in spite of that, I think this year looks pretty good for meat exports into Colombia. We've got aggressive, optimistic importers, and that's one of the keys in these countries. And so especially in Colombia, we have 20-25 importers who are very convinced that they can buy high quality U.S. product even at a higher price and sell it at a profit."

Source: U.S. Meat Export Federation, which is solely responsible for the information provided, and wholly owns the information. Informa Business Media and all its subsidiaries are not responsible for any of the content contained in this information asset.

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