Mexico cuts chicken imports with no quota to Brazil

Mexico reduced its chicken imports in 2020 mainly due to the elimination of a quota granted to Brazil, according to the Mexican company Industrias Bachoco.

In particular, in 2020 total chicken imports decreased 8.4% compared to 2019.

Brazil was able to increase its participation in the Mexican poultry market using a quota that the Mexican government grants to third countries. Mexico created the quota in 2013 for 300,000 tons of duty-free chicken meat as a way to develop new suppliers of poultry in other countries.

Although this quota was almost unused until 2017, Mexico’s approval of 46 Brazilian plants for export allowed Brazil to use the quota.

The TRQ expired on December 31, 2019, but was fully used in March 2019.

Chicken imports

Mexico imported meat and poultry offal (includes turkey and other animals) for 997 million dollars in 2020, a contraction of 18% year-on-year.

Of that total, imports from Brazil totaled only 10 million dollars, when in 2019 they were for 183 million.

Other suppliers of chicken and other poultry imports to Mexico in 2020 were the United States, with $ 928 million, and Chile, with $ 58 million.

According to the National Union of Poultry Farmers (UNA), chicken products are the main source of protein consumed in Mexico.

Mexico is among the top 10 chicken producers worldwide, with an estimated production of 3 million 593,300 tons of chicken meat in 2020, and a per capita consumption of 33.1 kilograms per year in 2020, which remained the same compared to per capita consumption in 2019.

Fresh chicken is the most consumed meat in Mexico.

According to UNA, more than 90% of the chicken is sold fresh, and only a small percentage is sold frozen and with added value (marinated, breaded, partially cooked and fully cooked, among others).

These products have found limited acceptance among Mexican consumers due to tradition and historical consumer preferences for fresh chicken.