India to accept Canadian pork

(National Pork Board (U.S.) photo via ARS/USDA)

Canadian pork and pork products may now be exported to India under a new agreement for market access announced Friday.

Canada, whose overall agrifood exports to India are mainly in pulse crops such as lentils and peas but also include oilseeds, canola oil, cereal grains, dairy goods, apples and cattle, expects to move $2 million in pork to the country in its first year of access.

That’s well below Canada’s 2014 pork exports to the U.S. ($1.45 billion) or Japan ($951 million), but future growth is expected as demand for value-added products is expected to increase, the government said in a release.

“We have been working with the government of Canada for many years to gain access to this market, which offers great potential for the export of a wide range of pork products,” Jacques Pomerleau, president of export development and trade promotion agency Canada Pork International, said in the same release.

“Canadian producers that manufacture value-added pork products will also benefit from this new market in the future,” he added.

Canada’s combined agrifood and seafood exports to India have risen steadily over the last decade, nearing $915 million in value in 2014, the government said, noting India’s agrifood and seafood imports overall rose by a compound annual growth rate of 12.3 per cent between 2012 and 2014.

“Canadian pork producers can immediately benefit from this new opportunity, exporting their product into this emerging market and increasing their export returns,” Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay said in the same release.

Access to India’s pork market is also expected to “further facilitate Canada’s position as a long-term, reliable partner in meeting India’s food security objectives,” the government said.

India’s grocery food market is worth more than $332 billion and projected to be the world’s fourth-largest such market by 2020, the government said in a separate report.

India, the government said, “remains focused on food security and marketing initiatives such as ‘nutritional security,’ which is a tag line used to increase health-conscious product consumption.”

India’s hospitality sector also offers high-value opportunities for Canadian companies to provide “niche products” including meats, the government added. — Network

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