The Brazilian poultry industry is currently the “most competitive” in the world according to new research findings released at this week’s SPACE 2016 event in Rennes by FranceAgriMer, the state-backed farm and sea products information service.
The present “rising stars” of the global poultry scene, however, are Russia and Ukraine, event delegates were told by research leader, Christian Renault of AND International, who addressed an industry seminar during the annual agribusiness exhibition in Brittany.
“We’ve gathered data on all aspects of poultry production across 18 countries, comparing national industries according to general conditions, economics, production costs, business profitability and global market share,” he said. “And our conclusion is that the industry in Brazil is top in competitive terms, while Russia and Ukraine are the rising stars.”
Speaking later to Poultrynews, however, he highlighted Ukraine as the country to watch, going forward, commenting that its rising status was based on very low labour costs and an impressively large “basin” of feed production land, growing low-priced wheat, maize, rapeseed and sunflowers.
Asked where French producers sit in the world league, he said the national industry was currently pretty much in the middle in terms of global competitiveness.
“Western Europe isn’t the most competitive zone, of course, due to the region’s relatively high labour costs and its need to apply more stringent environmental and welfare rules than is the case in some parts of the world,” said Mr Renault (pictured above).
“While we can accept our middle status in world terms, however, it is disappointing that France is now middle ranking in European terms, when set alongside the Netherlands, Belgium, the UK, Spain, Poland and Germany.
“Fifteen years ago we were first in that league but have lost market share in Europe and in our own domestic market.”
In response to its slide in fortunes, however, the French industry is now showing a willingness to regain home market share, especially targeting the catering and processing sectors, for which around 66% of current raw materials are imported.
“The industry is focusing on product suitability and cost-effectiveness to achieve its new goals,” he said, adding that this will require a move towards the production of larger chicken to satisfy modern processing needs.
“French production in the past has tended to include too many small birds, certainly smaller than is suited to catering and processing demands.
“The industry is also pressing for country of original labelling to be extended to processed products so that consumers can see exactly where all the raw materials are being sourced.”