In 2022, chicken meat production in China is forecast to exceed 2021 as prices rebound, demand boosts national consumption, and new facilities expand production capacity. Meanwhile, total imports of chicken meat to China are forecast to increase by 3% while exports are expected to grow by 4% next year. It is anticipated that prior investments, new facilities and new players in chicken production will increase capacity and expand broiler chick production. Industry sources indicated that in the first half of 2021, China imported over 500,000 grandparent stock to increase commercial stocks, and vertically integrated facilities, scheduled to come online in 2022, are estimated to increase production capacity by 20%. Most of these projects have been led by established producers with a production capacity of 100 million broilers or more per facility per year. In 2022, consumer demand for chicken meat is forecast to grow as chicken becomes more competitively priced. The food service sector and “healthy eating” trends will also increase demand.
In addition, the purchase of pre-cooked or fully-cooked chicken for home consumption, which grew during the Covid-19 pandemic, has remained post pandemic. In China, processed chicken meat accounts for nearly 15% of total chicken consumption. This category expanded during the Covid-19 pandemic as food service and retail sectors adjusted to consumer demand for quick and convenient home delivery. In 2022, China’s chicken meat exports to Japan and Hong Kong, the first and second largest export markets, respectively, are anticipated to improve as the food service sectors are expected to return to pre-Covid-19 levels.