The American Egg Board recently returned from the USAPEEC International Strategic Planning Conference in South Africa. This annual meeting set the stage for working towards another record year of egg exports. Along with more than 70 attendees – from domestic and international USAPEEC staff, USAPEEC members, including U.S. commodity representatives (egg, soy, corn, turkey, duck) and USDA officials – the AEB discussed U.S. export opportunities around the globe. The three-day event was packed with new learnings, success stories, idea exchanges and inspiration.

Conference activity highlights

  • Presentations and market updates on insights into current global market conditions, regulations and opportunities
  • In-person meetings with international staff, various commodity boards and government officials
  • One-on-one egg export meetings with USAPEEC staff, discussing egg programming, AEB in-market activities, and identifying possible new markets and direction(s) in programming

Market opportunities/updates

One of the key objectives of this trip was to proactively advance South Africa export opportunities. Behind the scenes conversations lead to positive movement on gaining trade access, as well as other trade progress for not only South Africa but other global regions.

South Africa

  • Key USDA FAS personnel connections include: David Cottrell (Acting Minister Counselor for Agricultural Affairs), Michael A. McCarthy (Consul General) and Laura Geller (Senior Agricultural Attaché).
  • Finalization of the table egg certificate is near, due to talks at the meeting amongst the U.S. industry and the Department of Agriculture, Forestry & Fisheries (DAFF) South Africa.
  • The FSIS egg product certification has been a priority for USDA FAS and is on track for approval.
  • The market offers an emerging opportunity for “value-added, convenience” egg products, as well.

New Zealand


  • Currently USDA and New Zealand government are pursuing a “value-added” egg certificate.
  • “Value-added” convenience egg products, including precooked egg patties, omelets and other cooked egg products show real potential at QSRs (such as Subway, Burger King, McDonald’s) and cruise ship lines.
  • Fine Foods New Zealand will be held June 26-29, 2018


  • NOM-159 (Mexican mandate regulating shell eggs) update:
    • The Mexican government issued new wording, prohibiting the washing of shell eggs destined for retail.
    • In response the U.S. government forwarded concerns with suggested alternative language along with supporting documentation via two research articles that uphold the washing of eggs as an acceptable and worthwhile practice. It is believed the Mexican government accepted the research.
    • A new posting is expected soon with a new 180-day input period, during which the egg industry can provide comments.
    • This process may be slow due to the presidential election in early July, with a new person in office in early December

Other countries

  • Guatemala and Honduras are now approved for egg products.

Next steps

Follow-up on the plethora of opportunities in the international markets for U.S. eggs. As an important partner in the process, the AEB welcomes your input. The organization highly encourages the egg industry to play a role in planning for the future of U.S. egg and egg product export. Boosting U.S. egg exports is important for the egg industry as a whole, and the AEB looks forward to another outstanding year.

The AEB encourages egg producers to participate in the next USAPEEC meeting, June 11-14, in Costa Rica as the next step in increasing the egg industry’s export efforts. Egg producers will learn firsthand about target egg export markets from international staff, as well as become familiar with other export related news. Complete event and registration details can be found here.