Taiwan seen to import more food and feed products from US
Taiwan is seen to import more food and feed products from the United States moving forward but the US government must put in place a strategy to brave stiffer competition.
“Taiwan’s formidable food processing industry offers numerous opportunities for U.S. ingredient exporters. In 2016, the U.S. exports of food preparation ingredients to Taiwan reached US$210 million, with further growth expected in the food retail and food service sectors,” US Department of Agriculture (USDA) said in its latest report.
Given Taiwan’s relatively small agricultural sector, its dependence on food and feed imports is expected to continue to grow, USDA said.
According to Taiwan’s Council of Agriculture, Taiwan imported US$3.33 billion of food and agricultural products (including edible fishery and forestry products) from the United States in 2016.
Meanwhile, US food preparation ingredients exports reached $210 million last year.
“However, the US faces significant price competition from New Zealand, especially in the dairy products,” it added.
For instance, New Zealand’s price advantage results from a free-trade pact signed with Taiwan in 2013. The pact eliminates tariffs over a 12 year implementation period.
Also, Taiwan’s food processing sector faces stricter food safety regulations and labor policies that have led to an increase in production costs.
As a result, food processors have becomes more conservative in new product development and plant investment. New product development focuses more on streamlining product composition and incorporating healthier ingredients.