It seems that the issue of Brazil and its poultry industry continues to be something to talk about. Now, with the conflict between Russia and the West over Ukraine escalating, Moscow is responding to the sanctions imposed on them by the European countries and the U.S., by prohibiting or restricting imports of foods from these countries. Such is the case of poultry products from U.S.
Where does Russia turn to now? Well, … Brazil. Brazilian poultry producers say they are ready to supply, nothing more and nothing less than 160,000 extra metric tons of chicken, equivalent to the quota the U.S. has with Russia. That is, 2.6 times more than the 60,000 metric tons exported from Brazil to Russia last year.
According to the Brazilian Animal Protein Association (ABPA), there are at least 25 companies exporting chicken, and Russia has authorized at least 20 suppliers of these companies. Along with its characteristics of natural resources, the availability of grains, integrated production, health status, range of markets, exporting experience and constant investments made make them the ideal supplier.
Another aspect that may be worth evaluating is the likely food vulnerability of Russia. As an example, Russia produces about 3 million metric tons of chicken a year, like Mexico. But Russia has 25 million more inhabitants than Mexico (145 million versus 121 million), and it is at a greater distance from the major producers.
Mixing politics with the feeding of people may not be all that good. As Bob Stallman, president of the American Farm Bureau said, "The biggest loser in this will be Russian consumers" — not the politicians who made the decisions. But as Brazil has cheaper production, could it be in the Russians’ best interest?
Either way, it boosts the Southern giant as a poultry producer and exporter.
Benjamín Ruiz can be reached at email@example.com.