The supply of sausage in Japan has historically been dominated by domestically manufactured products.
Imported products from China are relatively low priced, and have a competitive edge that has been welcomed, especially by the value segment in Japan.
Recent pesticide contamination in Chinese food products may deter consumers from purchasing frozen food products.
Market conditions started to change following a series of food safety related scandals/incidents involving Chinese foods a couple of years ago. Japanese traders began to look for other supply sources such as the United States and Thailand. Specific to American sausage, Japan‘s imports have grown by double digits over the past three years.
HS code 0810.20
consumption in 2008 due to soaring international prices.
European exporters have established a strong brand image of supplying high- quality cheese to the market. Domestic natural cheese production has recently been expanding, supported by subsidies.
other major currencies, have created fairly positive market conditions. Specific to American cheese, a major breakthrough is expected in 2010 with Japan‘s imports likely to exceed the 10,000 MT level for the first time. Japanese importers expect favorable conditions for future U.S. exports and are eager to explore business opportunities.
The Japanese trade is increasingly aware of American sausage. A favorable exchange rate has added to the competitiveness of American products. Demand for certain products uniquely suited for use in American style foods including hot dogs and pizza toppings continues to grow.
Imports of Chinese frozen vegetables have declined due to the pesticide contamination in Chinese frozen foods. Although the US imports share of frozen vegetables (HS code 0710) is only 14%, imports from the U.S. have increased 6% in the last 5 years. The U.S. is the largest supplier of frozen potato products, with 70% share of the total imports. Frozen potato imports from the U.S. have increased 15% in the last 5 years. Also, Japanese frozen food companies are becoming more active in pursuing overseas products.