Both EU agri-food exports and imports slowed down very slightly in value terms in July 2022, according to the latest monthly agri-food trade report published today by the European Commission. While the value of EU exports decreased by 2% compared to June and now stand at €19.2 billion, they still remain significantly higher than last year. EU imports also decreased by 2% in the same period, reaching €14.3 billion in July 2022. The EU trade balance is stable at €4.9 billion.
The latest monthly agri-food trade report also features a special focus on trade flows between the EU and the UK.
Despite the decline in overall export values, EU exports of cereals, most notably wheat but also barley, increased particularly to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). This confirms the higher outlook of exports of EU cereals to the countries who need it the most, following the disruption of the market caused by Russia’s war in Ukraine. The biggest increase in exports was recorded for wheat. Indeed, the EU exported 1.9 million tonnes of wheat in July 2022 to MENA, which represents a 300% increase compared to July of last year. In July, wheat total exports to the world reached 3 million tonnes, a 74% increase compared to last year.
The categories that experienced declining exports in July are fruit and nuts (-15%), and vegetables (10%). Olives and olive oil exports dropped by 14% in July, largely due to the decline of exports to the US.
Total EU agri-food exports from the beginning of the year until July reached €127 billion, which is 14% above the same period last year. The EU remains the world’s top agri-food exporter.
EU imports from Ukraine continue their fourth consecutive month of growth, following the implementation of the temporary trade liberalisation and the improvement of the functioning of the Solidarity Lanes. EU imports from major trading partners, like Brazil and the US, also increased, notably for maize and soya beans. Imports of grapes, sunflower seeds and bananas decreased the most in July compared with June. They respectively declined by 24%, 20% and 18%.
Total EU imports from the beginning of the year until July reached €96 billion, which is 33% above the same period last year.
EU agri-food trade with the United Kingdom
The United Kingdom has become the main trading partner with the EU. The total exchange of agri-food products reached €53.8 billion in 2021. Relative to this, the second largest trading partner is the US for which trade was worth €33.8 billion in 2021.
In 2022, total agri-food trade increased substantially between the EU and the UK. For the first seven months in 2022, agri-food trade expanded by 21%, to reach €35.5 billion, compared to the specific situation at the beginning of 2021 when the EU-UK Trade and Cooperation Agreement entered into force. The EU’s trade balance with the UK for agricultural and food products is positive at €18.6 billion from January to July 2022.
More insights as well as detailed tables are available below in the latest edition of the monthly EU agri-food trade report
- Publication date
- 26 October 2022
- Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development