Exports of poultry meat from the southern Brazilian state of Mato Grosso do Sul have risen by 329 percent over the last decade, reports Brazil’s Ministry of Agriculture. The increase in overseas sales has far outstripped that of the country as a whole, which has seen exports grow by 61.7 percent.

According to Nilton Pickler, president of the Mato Grosso do Sul agriculture and livestock federation, the state exported 161,000 tons of broiler meat and broiler products in 2014. The principal destinations were Saudi Arabia, Japan and China.

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Mato Grosso do Sul is now Brazil’s seventh largest state in terms of poultry exports, and thought to be home to 24 million broilers – approximately 2 percent of the national flock. In terms of flock size, it ranks 11th among Brazil’s 27 states. It has 1,141 poultry houses and 490 integrated broiler producers.

The state exports poultry to 75 countries in total but saw its overseas trade dented earlier this year as a result of the truck drivers’ strike