Exports have been one of the fundamental elements that explain the transformation experienced by the Spanish meat sector. 25 years ago, sales abroad were practically non-existent, while today meat products exports are the most important in the Spanish agri-food industry.
During 2014, 1.7 million tons of meat products were exported, worth 4,467 million euros. These figures represent interannual increases of 18% in volume and 6.6% in value.
The trade balance of this sector is favorable to our country by 460%. It should be noted that these good results were produced in an international scenario, where the closure of the Russian market has been a serious inconvenience for the sales abroad of some very significant meat products. About 80% of these exports are directed towards other countries of the European Union, with France and Portugal being the main destinations. Outside Europe, the main destination markets are Japan, China and Russia.
Imports, in turn, exceeded 228,500 tonnes of meat, to which must be added another 48,000 tonnes of processed meat. Among the meats, the most important item is beef (46.1% of the total), mainly from Germany and Poland, followed closely by pork (44.1%). Far-away are the offal (6.1%) and sheep meat (3.7%). Imports of sausages include cooked sausages (52.8% of the total), followed by cured (22%), cooked hams and shoulders (5.3) and cured hams and shoulders (2.2%). Other products account for the remaining 17.7%.

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Montse Gonzalez