German meat exports increase

By Nicholas Robinson

- Last updated on GMT

German meat exports increase

Related tags Exports European union Germany Beef Pork

Germany saw a decline in meat production in 2012, to just over eight million tonnes (mt), but the Federation of German Meat Industry (BVDF) said exports have continued to rise.

In total, Germany exported €9.7bn worth of meat and meat products in 2012, totalling just over 4mt and 12.7% of that was meat products, such as sausages. Around 85% of Germany’s meat exports were to EU member states.


Exports of fresh and frozen pork remained unchanged in 2012, according to preliminary data from the Federal Statistical Office, BVDF said. More than 1.5mt of fresh and frozen pork was exported in 2012, a decline of 1.7% on the previous year.

Meanwhile, pork exported to third countries (outside of the EU) increased to nearly 350,000t in 2012, which is a record for Germany and an increase of 11% on 2011 figures. BVDF said Germany remained the largest EU exporter of meat to third countries.

However, pork exports to Russia declined by 30,000t in 2012, possibly caused by a turbulent market. Despite this, the Chinese market spiked for Germany, expanding by 50,000t on 2011 levels to 78,000t last year. The BVDF said: “China has therefore become the second most important export destination outside the EU.”

An increase in exports of pork to the Ukraine increased by 88% in 2012, while an increase of 66% was achieved for exports to Belarus.


Similar success was not repeated in the beef sector with exports of fresh and frozen beef falling by around 17% to 325,000t in 2012. However, like pork, the main recipients of German beef were EU member states (90%).

Beef exports to third countries in 2012 were half the size of those in 2011 and reached only 30,500t. The BVDF attributed a “complete elimination”​ of deliveries to Turkey as the cause and said that was down to tariff increases on meat. If exports to Turkey had not ceased, around 20,000t could be added to the third country export figure, which is the amount exported to Turkey in 2011.

Exports of beef to Russia also saw decline (down 60%) on 2011 figures, but the BVDF said beef exports to Norway had doubled in 2012, standing at 12,000t.


Despite poor beef exports, Germany still struggled for beef and imported 14% more in 2012 (287,000t) than in the previous year, with around 85% of that figure coming from EU countries. And, although Germany saw strength in its pork export market, the country imported a massive 958,000t of the meat in 2012, but the BVDF said this was down by 2.3% on 2011 figures.

Related topics Meat

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