European Union broiler exports are expected to drop more than 5% in 2011, due largely to tightened Russian import quotas, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

The drop, the first in the last five years, will bring total EU exports to 940,000 metric tons, down from 2010's 7.3% jump over 2009 to 992,000 metric tons. Russia has tightened the imports it will allow, under tariff-rate quotas, to 350,000 metric tons.

The domestic market for poultry is also expected to slow in 2011. "Poultry meat consumption growth — around 1% — is less than the demographic one, showing that, per capita, consumption is probably slightly decreasing," said a USDA report. "Several market analyses showed that, while the average consumer switched from beef or pork meat to poultry meat, the lower income consumers simply reduced their protein purchases." The United Kingdom is expected to be hit particularly hard by the combination of decreased exports and lowered domestic interest, seeing near-zero growth in 2011 — a significant difference from 2010's 8% output growth.