Asian markets have become primary growth opportunities for Chilean pork, with China, South Korea, and Japan being the main trading partners. ChilePork, as the industry brand that brings together Chilean exporters, leads the country’s strategy to keep its position among importers and distributors, while aiming to grow among chefs and decision makers, and in the long term, reach the end consumer directly.
Asia is a key market for the Chilean pork industry. Currently, meat is the fourth largest food exporting sector in Chile, and pork represents 64% of the total. Pork production from 2020 to 2021 is expected to have increased by 3%, from 574,173 tons/cwe to 589,610 tons/cwe, most of which is exported.
As of November 2021, 66% of the total volume of pork exports is being shipped to China, 10% to South Korea, and 9% to Japan, solidifying the Asian market as the industry’s most important, with 85% of its total. Therefore, all promotion efforts in Asia are vital, and that’s where ChilePork, as a joint public-private sector brand (ProChile, the Chilean Exports Promotion Bureau, and the exporters) has played a key role to position the pork industry and its products. The multitude of promotional activities developed by ChilePork have helped Chile become the seventh largest pork exporter worldwide and also be seen as a reliable and internationally renowned supplier.
“We have moved from positioning within importers and distributors to reaching out to chefs and strategic decision makers of the HORECA (foodservice) channel within the Asian market, which is key for our medium- and long-term business plans. After gaining the trust of buyers, we are positioning ourselves as leaders in the industry, highlighting our high standards of health, safety, biosecurity, and sustainability,” says Juan Carlos Domínguez, President of ChileCarne.
In 2021, ChilePork focused strategically on the three main Asian markets, to keep its competitive position and strengthen the HORECA marketing chain, which includes chefs and decision-makers. In the case of China, it also seeks to reach inland cities in the medium term.
As for other countries, negotiations with ASEAN are making progress. In January 2021, the first pork export to the Philippines was made, and one year after that, on January 27, 2022, our first promotion event will be held in Manila for local importers to learn about the Chilean pork industry and try various preparations using Chilean pork. In the long term, efforts will continue to focus on obtaining authorization to export to markets such as Vietnam, Indonesia, and Thailand with a total market of over 400 million people.
“In 2021, we held various networking events with more than 120 importers in Japan, South Korea, and China to strengthen ties between our exporting companies and Asian media and business leaders. In addition, cooking master classes allowed us to introduce our products to more than 40 executive chefs at 5-star hotels and renowned restaurants in China. These networking and positioning efforts help us share the attributes of our top-quality products,” highlights Domínguez.
ChilePork, alongside other food brands (Fruits from Chile, Wines of Chile, and SalmonChile) takes part in various activities organized by ProChile that contribute directly to positioning our country’s image. An example of this is the “Unboxing Chile” campaign that featured soccer player Alexis Sánchez as the face of the campaign.
As important actors in the food industry, pork exporters, via ChilePork, seek not only to strengthen the sector but to contribute directly to positioning Chile as a producer and exporter of top-quality foods.