January 21, 2000
News Release 00-014
U.S. WILL LIKELY DOMINATE WORLD EGG MARKET, REPORTS ITC
The United States was one of the world's leading producers and exporters of eggs from 1994
to 1998 and likely will dominate the world market in the future, says the U.S. International
Trade Commission (ITC) in its report Industry and Trade Summary: Eggs.
The ITC, an independent, nonpartisan, factfinding agency, recently released the report as part
of an ongoing series of reports on thousands of products imported into and exported from the
United States. Following are highlights from the report.
- The U.S. egg industry historically has been oriented toward the domestic market,
which is the third largest in the world (behind China and the European Union (EU)).
However, between 1994 and 1998, the period covered by the report, U.S. exports rose
by more than 18 percent to 325 million dozen, equivalent to almost 5 percent of
domestic production. The United States is the second largest exporter of eggs (just
behind the EU) and in 1998 accounted for about one-third of world exports. Principal
markets included Canada, Mexico, Japan, Hong Kong, and the EU.
- During 1994-98, the average annual value of U.S. egg shipments was about
$5.3 billion, consisting of $1.2 billion of hatching eggs, $3.2 billion of table eggs, and
$0.9 billion of egg products. There are about 73,000 U.S. egg farms, and annual
employment in the egg products industry is approximately 8,000 persons. U.S.
imports of eggs are negligible, at less than 0.5 percent of consumption. Endowed with
a favorable climate, state-of-the-art production technology, and advantageous cost and
market structures, the U.S. egg industry is among the most efficient in the world.
- World trade in egg products is restricted as a result of both tariff and nontariff
measures. For example, tariffs on U.S. product exported to Canada, Mexico, and
Japan are in excess of 20 percent ad valorem, while nontariff barriers, such as sanitary
certification, shelf-life, and labeling requirements also represent obstacles for U.S.
- The principal U.S. consumers of egg products include households, restaurants,
institutions, and producers of further processed products. At the retail level, changes
in consumer incomes and retail prices for egg products relative to meats are the
principal factors influencing demand. Other factors affecting consumption include
advertising, promotion, and concern about health and nutrition.
The foregoing information is from the ITC report Industry and Trade Summary: Eggs (USITC
Publication 3268, December 1999).
ITC Industry and Trade Summary reports include information on product uses, U.S. and
foreign producers, and customs treatment of the products being studied; they analyze the basic
factors affecting trends in consumption, production, and trade of the commodities, as well as
factors bearing on the competitiveness of the U.S. industry in domestic and foreign markets.
This report will be available on the ITC Internet web site at www.usitc.gov. A printed copy
may be ordered without charge by calling (202) 205-1809, or by writing the Office of the
Secretary, U.S. International Trade Commission, 500 E Street, SW, Washington, DC 20436.
Requests may be faxed to (202) 205-2104.
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