Russia sees a steady growth in halal food exports and hopes it will spur poultry sales to foreign customers in the coming years.
Russia’s largest meat producer, Cherkizovo Group, expects the country to get the green light this year to export poultry and livestock products to Malaysia where there is an apparent demand for halal products, the company’s press office said. In addition, the company hopes for a rise in halal exports to the CIS region, the Customs Union and the Middle East.
In 2022, Russia’s halal food exports jumped by 24% compared with the previous year, Sergey Levin, Russian deputy agricultural minister, outlined during an industry conference in Kazan.
Competition with the US
In the countries of the CIS and the Customs Union, where the Muslim culture of consumption prevails, poultry meat from Russia still accounts for only 8% of consumption and 35% of imports, Natalya Bartnovskaya, director of the foreign economy department of Cherkizovo Cherkizovo’s trade house pointed out.
“Although we are the closest neighbours [with CIS countries] and conscientious manufacturers of halal products, in these countries, the main imports today come from the United States. There are all prerequisites for a rise in deliveries [from Russia],” she said, adding that to make this happen, a recognition of the Russian product by the halal certification bodies of the CIS countries and the Customs Union is needed.
In addition, Bartnovskaya expressed confidence that Russian exporters can strengthen their position in the markets of the GCC countries, primarily Saudi Arabia, and increase the export of branded products. The prospects also look bright in some Asian markets.
Expanding the range
In 2022, Cherkizovo saw its halal exports reach 11,500 tonnes compared with only 3,500 tonnes in 2021. Cherkizovo Group manufactures halal products at 6 production sites, all of which have certificates for compliance with halal standards in several Middle Eastern countries. Among other things, these enterprises employ Muslim workers who carry out the manual slaughter of poultry.
The Cherkizovo Group’s halal product portfolio includes the Latifa, Dajajti and Krasnobor brands. The latter was designed specifically for export to Muslim countries. In 2022, the company also began exporting halal turkey meat under the Krasnobor brand to retail stores in Saudi Arabia.