POULTRY EXPORT TO REACH 8,000 TONS
Bulgarian poultry farmers are continually expanding their market positions. Prof. Boris Stoimenov, Chairman of the Bulgarian Union of Poultry-breeders believes that annual poultry export should reach 8,000-9,000 tons in order to allow firms improve their efficiency and combat the strong competition. In 2004 export of poultry amounted to 6,500 tons, up from 5,500 tons in 2003. The forecasts for 2005 are that poultry export will reach 7,500-8,000 tons. Not only the quantity, but also the average price at which poultry was traded reported an increase last year. It went up from USD5,620/ton in 2003 to USD6,490/ton in 2004. According to experts, the average increase was mostly due to the the high export price of poultry liver and meat from water fowls, as chicken and turkey meat have stayed comparatively cheap at between USD1,600-4,000/ton. The increased export in 2004 is a result of the BGN1MN export subsidy Bulgaria got as a non-EU-member. Each export-oriented firm was financially assisted which obviously had a stimulating effect. Meat and liver from water fowls accounted for more than 60% of last year's export. Pitifully, the number of licensed slaughterhouses for export of meat to the EU is still small in our country. In 2004 only nine firms were approved to export white meat, but they possess as well production lines for liver and its processing. That is the reason for which the granted 6,050-ton duty free quota for export of poultry to the EU is only partially utilized. By tradition, export of frozen chicken meat has the greatest share in the export structure. Over 50% of the total volume goes to France, and smaller qualities are intended for Germany, Spain and Austria.The export of goose liver rose by 40% in 2004 which main markets are France, Austria and Belgium.