Opportunities in Vietnam’s Beef Market: Growing Demand and Import Trends

Vietnam is a growing market for beef and beef products, with demand driven by numerous factors, including a growing population, economic growth, free trade agreements, higher per capita income, and growth in distribution and the foodservice channel.

Despite efforts to improve beef quality and production, local beef supply has not yet met growing market demand, offering opportunities for imported beef. Thus, global beef exports to Vietnam, excluding beef from India and Hong Kong, have grown at an average rate of 24% in the last three years, from $217 million in 2020 to $335 million in 2022. , according to one of the latest USDA reports.

The Vietnamese Ministry of Agriculture has published its Livestock Development Strategy 2021-2023 with which it seeks to increase beef production. The animal census is around 6.5 million animals and the Ministry wants the animals to gain weight, so production would increase between 4 and 5% annually, seeking to increase the proportion of cross breeds, more productive than local ones, becomes 70%.

In terms of consumption, Vietnam presents a promising market for high-value imported food products, including beef. Furthermore, Vietnamese consumers continue to prefer healthy and safe food products, especially in the post-COVID-19 era.

Per capita consumption would be around 3.83 kg/person by 2022 and local production covers 45% of demand, offering opportunities for large global exporters such as the US, Brazil or the European Union.

Vietnam imports meat from the United States, Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Hong Kong and India. According to industry experts, the meat imported from India is mainly buffalo meat, while most of the beef from Hong Kong is, in fact, re-exported to several countries.

Imported meat, although it has a higher price than domestic meat, is preferred by Vietnamese consumers thanks to its tenderness, juiciness, good preservation and traceability. It is widely sold in supermarket chains, restaurants and hotels. Meanwhile, national beef is usually present in traditional markets and local restaurants.

Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City are the largest markets. Most meat enters through Hai Phong Port or Ho Chi Minh City via Cai Mep and Cat Lai Port and is then transported to distributors across the country.

According to Trade Data Monitor, the volume of beef imported into Vietnam has grown at an average rate of 24% over the past 3 years, reaching $335 million 6 in 2022, up 24% compared to 2021.

In the specific case of Spain, between 2020 and 2021 Vietnamese imports of beef, both frozen and fresh, and offal, grew significantly, but already in 2022 they have reduced by 3.8% in value (7 million euros) and by 12.6% in exported quantity (2,300 t).

Specifically for the year 2023, the data offered by ICEX-Estacom, from January to September show that the downward trend has increased since Spain has managed to export 1,394 t of beef product (-29%) for a value that has reduced by 22% (4.9 million euros).

2023-11-28 22:52:30
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