Growing demand for meat – including chicken, pork and beef – in Cambodia has spurred a commensurate increase in imports of U.S. distiller’s dried grains with solubles (DDGS), corn gluten feed and meal and the first major U.S. corn purchase in recent history.
That explosive growth led Manuel Sanchez, U.S. Grains Council (USGC) regional director for Southeast Asia, and his team to attend the country’s prominent international feed and livestock industry show, Agri Cambodia 2018, in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, this fall. It was the largest gathering of farmers, millers, feed producers, veterinarians, processors and integrators to date in the nation.
“Cambodia’s feed and livestock production industries have witnessed significant growth over the past few years,” Sanchez said. “Major international producers have increased their investments in the number of feed mills in the country. The first aquaculture feed mill facility is set to finish construction in early 2019, and feed production is growing at an average rate of 15% per year.”
Dedication to small yet important markets like Cambodia is needed to satisfy growing demand for feed grain and build market share for the U.S. producers and exporters, USGC said.
“Cambodia is taking the lead as one of the fastest growing economies in Asia,” Sanchez said. “Consumer demand for meat protein translates to U.S. market share for coarse grains and co-products. But we have to maintain a presence in the market to capture the potential.”
Cambodia bought 2,446 metric tons (96,300 bushels) in 2017/2018. The country made its first-ever U.S. DDGS purchase of 858 tons in 2010, with imports growing to 63,000 tons in 2017/2018. The country’s imports of corn gluten feed and meal have increased from 499 metric tons in 2016/2017 to 918 metric tons in 2017/2018.
“The Council has a goal to support Cambodia’s growing livestock industry in 2019, providing all the information and resources to position our coarse grains and co-products as vital components of the country’s raw materials needs,” Sanchez said. “By engaging with domestic veterinarians and feed formulations professionals there, we should be able to provide technical support and increase usage of U.S. DDGS in local feed rations for all feed sectors.”
On average, Cambodia’s meat consumption per person, per year stands at 16.13 kg, relatively low compared to neighboring countries like Malaysia, where consumption is 52.3 kg per person, per year, or the United States, where it’s 98.3 kg per person, per year.
The country’s demand for animal proteins is projected to increase 14.6% by 2020, according to a report by the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. Cambodia also estimates its number of tourists will exceed 6 million in 2018, contributing to increased demand for milk and eggs.