In 2014, natural honey exports by country totaled US$2.3 billion up by an overall 54.1% for all natural honey shippers over the five-year period starting in 2010. The value of global natural honey exports gained 10.8% from 2013 to 2014.
Among continents, European countries accounted for the highest dollar value worth of natural honey exports during 2014 with shipments amounting to $879.2 million or 38.3% of worldwide exported honey sales. This percentage compares with 25.4% from Asia and 24.4% from Latin America and the Caribbean.
The 4-digit Harmonized Tariff System code prefix for natural honeyis 0409.
Natural Honey Exports by Country
Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of natural honey during 2014:
- China: US$260.3 million (11.4% of total honey exports)
- Argentina: $204.4 million (8.9%)
- New Zealand: $168.2 million (7.3%)
- Germany: $150.3 million (6.6%)
- Mexico: $147 million (6.4%)
- Vietnam: $127.8 million (5.6%)
- Spain: $120.4 million (5.3%)
- Brazil: $98.6 million (4.3%)
- Hungary: $95.8 million (4.2%)
- Ukraine: $93.2 million (4.1%)
- India: $77.2 million (3.4%)
- Belgium: $73.1 million (3.2%)
- Romania: $53.9 million (2.4%)
- Italy: $46.4 million (2%)
- Canada: $46 million (2%)
Among the above countries, the fastest-growing natural honey exporters since 2010 were: Ukraine (up 367.1%), Vietnam (up 150.9%), New Zealand (up 140.4%) and Brazil (up 79.2%).
Bucking the upbeat trend was Canada, which posted an 18.2% decline in the value of its natural honey shipments from 2010 to 2014.
The listed 15 countries shipped 76.9% of all natural honey exports in 2014 (by value).
The following countries posted the highest positive net exports for natural honey during 2014. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the surplus between the value of each country’s natural honey exports and its import purchases for that same commodity.
- Argentina: US$204.4 million (net export surplus up 18.4% since 2010)
- China: $201.7 million (up 16.6%)
- New Zealand: $167.6 million (up 140.2%)
- Mexico: $147 million (up 74.3%)
- Vietnam: $126.9 million (up 150.4%)
- Brazil: $98.6 million (up 79.2%)
- Hungary: $93.5 million (up 56.3%)
- Ukraine: $93 million (up 372.7%)
- India: $75.3 million (up 44.7%)
- Spain: $59.2 million (up 35.7%)
- Romania: $45.6 million (up 15.3%)
- Bulgaria: $39.1 million (up 33.4%)
- Uruguay: $38.4 million (up 70.5%)
- Chile: $27.5 million (down -5.4%)
- Cuba: $23.8 million (up 93.1%)
Argentina has the highest surplus in the international trade of natural honey. In turn, this positive cashflow confirms Argentina’s strong competitive advantage for this specific product category.
The following countries posted the highest negative net exports for natural honey during 2014. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the deficit between the value of each country’s natural honey import purchases and its exports for that same commodity.
- United States: -US$540 million (net export deficit up 101.9% since 2010)
- Germany: -$165.9 million (down -7.4%)
- France: -$120.6 million (up 69.6%)
- Japan: -$119.8 million (up 19.7%)
- United Kingdom: -$110.6 million (up 9%)
- Saudi Arabia: -$58.7 million (up 104.4%)
- Netherlands: -$53.5 million (up 81.6%)
- Italy: -$44.8 million (up 102.5%)
- Switzerland: -$32.3 million (up 9.6%)
- Hong Kong: -$32.2 million (up 112.8%)
- Sweden: -$19.8 million (up 11.8%)
- Austria: -$18.8 million (up 29.5%)
- Singapore: -$18.1 million (up 141.1%)
- Ireland: -$13.7 million (up 99.1%)
- Australia: -$12.6 million (down -216.9%)
United States has the highest deficit in the international trade of natural honey. In turn, this negative cashflow confirms America’s strong competitive disadvantage for this specific product category but also signals opportunities for natural honey-supplying countries that help satisfy the powerful demand from American consumers.
Natural Honey Exporting Companies
According to global trading platform Alibaba, the following companies are also examples of natural honey-trading companies located in the country shown within parentheses:
- Capilano Honey Ltd (Australia)
- Caprilush International (Mexico)
- Duc Cuong Phat Company Limited (Vietnam)
- Dutch Golld Honey (United States)
- Groeb Farms, Inc (United States)
- Navrang SL (Spain)
- Nuxten Health Ltd (New Zealand)
- Rowse Honey Ltd (United Kingdom)
- Zanchetta Alimentos LTDA (Brazil)
- Zhejiang Jiangshan Bee Enterprise Co, Ltd (China)
In addition, here are 5 other multinational honey suppliers based on searches from global trade intelligence firm Zepol.
- Bee Honey (Vietnam)
- Compania Inversora Platens (Argentina)
- Honeyma (Argentina)
- Miel Mex (Mexico)
- Mieles Del Mayab (Mexico)
Honey is becoming profitable item for businesses large, both on the international market and domestic.
Honey is becoming profitable item for businesses large, both on the international market and domestic.
In the Asian market, but do not hold topped in exporting honey to the world market, but honey Vietnam has confirmed its position as standing "runners", just behind China.
According to a study in 2014 of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Vietnam should take advantage of the development potential of agricultural trade from the implementation of the Economic Partnership Agreement Trans-Pacific (TPP). However, according to the USDA, so the coffee items, rubber was fully entitled to preferential trade agreements from earlier should commodities such as rice, cassava, pepper, processed foods and honey there will be more opportunities.
During the conference "Challenges and opportunities for export development Vietnam honey products" by the Center for Export Support - Trade Promotion Agency (Vietrade) in cooperation with Vietnam Beekeepers Association held mid-April the past, the issue of export of honey again be the experts rated as a potential to penetrate further into the international market.
Specifically, in addition to the US market is about 90% imported honey Vietnam can enter the European market (EU). Vietnam currently new honey proportion is less than 10% of total imports of the EU market is 4660 tons / year. Also according to the study, in 2015, the sector's exports are forecast bee Vietnam better prospects (in 2014 reached 46,600 tons output, turnover of more than US $ 120 million), while the market demand increases high. Data from Vietnam Beekeepers Association recently said the quarter 1/2015, the EU alone, Vietnam enterprises have exported more than 80 tons of honey. This is considered a positive sign for entering this market.
"But the demand of the market is huge, but the current difficulty of Vietnam's honey industry lacks technical knowledge of beekeeping, product quality management, marketing strategy.Especially, Vietnam does not have a honey brand on the world market, so low product value compared to other countries, "said Bui Quang Hung, Director of Export Assistance Center, the Trade Promotion Department (MOIT) share.
With export markets, Vietnam honey is evaluated many opportunities to grow, even in the domestic market, large gaps still honey production is fragmented and lacks a strong brand with distribution system good coordination to compete. Honey market Vietnam is the last time the industry now considered to be quite exciting. This is evidenced by the presence more and more products made from honey (refining, mint flowers, floral labels, forest flowers, lemon peach ...), technology honey, royal jelly, pollen ...
Not only in retail stores, the markets that the products from Vietnam honey has also been included in the supermarkets, hypermarkets nationwide.
According to experts, the market will soon honey very exciting because consumers tend to focus more on health care. Therefore, the demand for honey processing sugar substitute in foods, drinks will increase. However, the difference between honey industry with other sectors in the competition at the input, not output. Therefore, when Vietnam integrates a fully AEC, if FDI into Vietnam and honey exploiting here, the Vietnamese enterprises do not invest farms, breeding areas will be very difficult to survive. It is time Vietnam businesses to look back and consolidate the "health" for your business in two ways, including: brand and product quality.
Recently, the Trade Promotion Department has also signed agreements with the CBI to implement programs to support exports of food materials (including honey products) of Vietnam to the EU (referred to as ECP program ). Accordingly, the ECP will support Vietnam enterprises through training programs on export market access and value creation; develop capacity building programs for Vietnam exporters of law and regulations of the EU. Since then, increase knowledge and responsibility in the operation of these organizations support local business through export marketing plan.
Vietnam's honey export - opportunities and potentials
Vietnam is a potential and traditional honey producing country. Before 1980, beekeeping was still under-developed. At that time, beekeeping was a fun that brought a small income for households. Since 1980s, beekeeping has developed rapidly in all provinces. At the beginning of 1990s, Vietnam started to export honey but volume was very small, just about tens tons a year. Honey-beekeeping in Vietnam was a small and backward sector in compared with in the world. However, at present, Vietnam becomes one of the well-known honey exporters in the world markets.
Currently, Vietnam ranks the 6th in the world and the 2nd in Asia regarding honey export, following China and is in the top 10 honey export countries in the world.
Current export situation and limitations
Export revenue: In 2011, the whole country produced more than 30,000 tons of honey. In which, 27,000 tons was for exports. In 2012, Vietnam export revenue was US$58 million, accounting for 3.1% export revenue of the world. The U.S. is the main importer of Vietnam's honey, taking 95% Vietnam honey exported to the world. 2013 was the first year when Vietnam exported over 30,000 tons of honey to the U.S., and reached the revenue of US$75.66 million. Honey export to Middle East, Japan, EU and some Asian countries reaches 34,000 tons equivalent to about US$85 million. This is a breakthrough of the honey sector. Beside the U.S., Vietnam also exports this product to the Middle East, Japan, the EU and some other Asian countries. However, Vietnam honey export price is US$2.48/ton, much lower than the average export price to the U.S (US$3.31) and to other countries.
According to Vietnam beekeeping association, Vietnam continuously gained good results in exporting honey to the world in the first seven months of 2014. In total, 27,000 tons of honey were exported to 14 countries and territories. The country succeeded in exporting to the new strict market, Australia and other markets such as Mongolia and the EU. The U.S. still accounts for 95% of the country’s total export revenue, with over 25,000 tons in the first 7 months of 2014.
Growth rate: The average growth rate of Vietnam’s honey export increased stably at high rate (14%). Especially, in compared with 2008, growth rate of Vietnam’s honey export in 2012 was 87%, reaching nearly 30,000 tons for the world market. Growth rate in the period 2009 – 2013 was 20% in value and 12% in volume. In which, in 2013, the whole country produced more than 37,000 tons of honey.
Vietnam’s proportion of honey export in the world: 6.3% .
Products are produced and exported: "Natural honey" and "Beeswax"
Main export markets: The U.S, Canada, Japan, Taiwan (China) and Germany, etc… highly appreciate Vietnam honey except antibiotic and chemical contents.
Analysis of honey import and export countries shows that China is the biggest honey producing country. The largest honey import country is the U.S. Meanwhile, the U.S do not import honey from China but other countries and Vietnam ranks the second in exporting honey to the U.S. This shows that it is an opportunity for Vietnam enterprises. However, enterprises should comply strictly standards to avoid losing prestige and national trademark that the sector has built up.
Honey: World Production, Top Exporters, Top Importers.
Honey Production by Country
Honey, is a naturally produced sweet gathered and used by man for the last 8000 years. There are many different grades of honey available. Natural grade is different from industrial. Every batch of honey is special, even when from a similar region bees gather nectar from a wide variety of plants, producing distinct tastes.
World Honey Exporters
We can look at honey exports and imports, Following the production trends, China was the number one honey exporter in the world, selling 284 million dollars worth in 2009. China dominated 12% of the global honey sales. Germany was the second largest exporter followed by Mexico. Exported Mexican honey accounted for 7% of the total market. Below is a list of countries exporting by value with a chart.
World Exporters of Honey by Country, Market Value, and Estimated Value
World Honey Importers
Germany was the number one honey importer in 2009. They imported almost a quarter of the available honey, 24%. United States was the world’s second largest honey importer, importing 16% of the market share at an estimated value of 383 million dollars. The United Kingdom was third, France was fourth, and Japan was the fifth. Below is a list of the top ten countries importing honey in the world with estimated value and market share.
World’s Top Importers of Honey by Country, Market Value, and Estimated Value
United States Imports of Honey
While the United States is one of the world’s largest producers of honey, they are also the second largest importer. They buy more honey than the largest exporter of honey sells. The United States has a unique and diversified honey import profile. The United States imports 19% of their foreign honey from Argentina, spending an estimated value of 54 million dollars in 2010. Vietnam was the second largest source, accounting for 16% of U.S. bought foreign honey in 2010. The U.S. spent an estimated 47 million dollars on Vietnamese honey in 2010. India was the third largest source and Canada was the fourth. Below is a list of the top ten counties that Untied States is buying honey from.
United States Imports of Honey 2010, list by country, estimated value, and market share percentage with pie chart
Honey exports to world markets 2015
Over many years Vietnam has greatly and steadily increased its honey production, the number of beehives, the geographic range of honey production and the diversity of floral sources. Similarly the expansion of production of coffee beans and cashew nuts in the past 2 decades has put Vietnam in the top 5 producers and exporters of those products. Vietnam’s total honey exports in 2014 are reported by leading exporters to have reached 55,000 metrictons, primarily in the color range of light amber and amber. An increasing percentage of their blends incorporate honey from Acacia mangium, a wild forest plant. This floral source is not color stable, and during the last 3 years the U.S. honey industry has become aware of the dilemmas this honey creates.
Due to a cold winter and early spring in several honey-producing areas, the 2015 Vietnam honey crop has been delayed. Under these circumstances Vietnamese beekeepers have been struggling to feed their bees and keep them alive waiting for more favorable climatic conditions to allow honey production with proper qualities.
Price tendencies are up but still competitive. The problem is the lack of offers and shipment, plus the lack of light amber colors. Some leading exporters have already predicted that the export volumes will decline in 2015 by 35%. How the Vietnamese honey industry will handle production and blending of Acacia mangium, which has become a major source of the total crop, is a fundamental question for Vietnam honey as a whole.
To its great credit, the Vietnamese Beekeeping Association has opposed the use of resin technology, which introduces and removes water. The resulting product is not legally “honey” in as defined by most producing countries. The Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) technology, newly applied to honey, should be able to detect when honey has been altered by use of resin technology, and there are efforts to expand the data base to be more comprehensive than at present. Since resin technology removes pollen, antibiotics and natural honey components, it is inconsistent with the image of honey as a natural product.
Many opportunities to export honey to the European market
Consumer demand for honey in the world keeps increasing while supply is insufficient. Therefore, there will have quite a lot of opportunities for Vietnamese enterperises. However, in order to improve the power of competitiveness, as well as creating conditions for exporting honey to the European market, companies need to develop brandin, promoting and enhance the value added content of products.
That is the main content discussed by experts and companies at the conference "Challenges and opportunities for the development of exporting Vietnamese honey products" held by the Center for Export Promotion - Trade Promotion Agency in Coordination with Vietnam Association of beekeepers on 9/4 in HCMC.
Experts discuss the needs of the market of honey in Europe.
Bui Quang Hung - President of Export Assistance Center, said that Vietnam is considered to be the potential honey exporting market. Vietnam is one of the countries who exports the large amount of honey to the world market. According to statistics of the General Department of Customs, Vietnam currently ranks 6th in the world and 2nd in Asia (after China) in the export of honey. In 2014, Vietnam exported more than 46.6 thousand tons of honey, reach the turnover of $ 120 million. However, Viet Nam focuses so much on exporting honey to the US market with 90% of total exports, only 10% are in other markets, including Europe.
In 2015, it is predicted that there will have many positive prospects for Vietnamese honey export due to the increasing demand. In the first quarter / 2015, Vietnamese enterprises has exported over 80 tons of honey to the European market only.This is considered a positive sign for entering this market.
Sharing the same view, Reindert Dekker, expert of Imports Support Organization from the developing countries (CBI- Netherlands) said that the current demand for honey keeps increasing while supply is insufficient. Therefore, there will have quite a lot of opportunities for Vietnamese enterperises. However, in order to improve the power of competitiveness, as well as creating conditions for exporting honey to the European market, companies need to develop branding, promoting and enhance the value added content of products. Branding for Nation is the best strategy that enterprises need to carry out to improve the competitiveness for Vietnam bees and increase the value of the product in the world market.
According to Ho Van Tinh – President of Phong Son Co limited liability company, Europe is a potential market that many Vietnamese company is looking forward to because Vietnamese enterprises can meet the quality that is required of this market. Vietnmese companies set the export strategy in the European market this year to reach a 20- 25% instead of 10% as before.
In spite of the fact that the demand is huge, the current difficulty of Vietnam's honey industry is the lack of the technical knowledge of beekeeping, the management of product quality and the marketing strategies. Especially, Vietnam has no honey brand on the world market resulted in the low quality product compared to other countries - Bui Quang Hung said.
Therefore, in order to support Vietnam bee industry to expand and develop export market opportunities, especially the EU market which is very potential, Trade Promotion Bureau signed an agreement with the CBI (Netherlands) to deploy Development declaration export assistance Program food material (including honey products) of Vietnam to the EU ( ECP).
ECP will support Vietnamese enterprises through training programs in exporting, marketing and valuing the creation; developing capacity building programs for Vietnam exporters about law and regulations of the EU; enhancing the knowledge and responsibility in the operation of local business support organizations through export marketing plan.