ASEAN May 2019
US set new record for Dairy Exports to ASEAN
Latest trade statistics from the US Census Bureau showed that dairy exports from the US to Southeast Asia has reached a historical high of 441,000 tonnes valued at US$771 million in 2018, marking an impressive 28% growth in volume and 12% in value terms over the previous year.
2018 also marks a record year for US dairy exports worldwide with 9% growth over 2017.
According to Vikki-Nicholson West, Senior Vice President, Southeast Asia Business Unit, US Dairy Export Council (USDEC), “2018 was a milestone year for the US dairy industry in Southeast Asia as we significantly ramped up multifaceted programs supporting customer business and innovation success with US Dairy. Our commitment continues to deepen region-wide, where awareness and excitement about US dairy advantages is steadily rising amongst chefs and food & beverage manufacturers.”
In 2018, Southeast Asia was the 2nd largest export market for US dairy exports after Mexico but ahead of Canada and China. US dairy exports to this region grew by nearly 100,000 tonnes from 2017, mainly due to strong shipments of whey ingredients, milk powder and cheese. In contrast, exports to China rose strongly in first half of 2018 but slowed down in middle of 2018 following US/China trade frictions and retaliatory tariffs. (refer Chart 1.0)
US cheese shipments remained one of the brightest spots for US exporters with 2% growth to reach 348,591 tonnes exported globally. This effectively made US the world’s largest single-country cheese exporter. Meanwhile, cheese exports to Southeast Asia , although still small compared to its North Asian counterparts, reached 19,000 tonnes, a 15% growth from 2017. Philippines and Indonesia remained as top 2 destinations for US cheeses accounting for 2/3 of US cheese exports to this region . (refer Chart 2.0)
Dalilah Ghazalay, Regional Director – Southeast Asia, USDEC said, “We are encouraged by the uptick in demand for US cheese in Southeast Asia, not just for commonly-known cheeses like cheddar and mozzarella, but also for artisan and specialty cheeses, including many American Originals. We continue to introduce new applications for US Cheeses, capitalising on the variety, versatility, quality and craftmanship inherent in each piece of cheese exported from the US.”
US Dairy is also the Official Dairy Partner for the World Gourmet Summit (WGS) for its 2nd consecutive year in 2019. The WGS partnership aims to inspire chefs in the region to innovate new, Southeast Asia friendly food creations leveraging the versatility and variety of award-winning US cheeses. WGS co-founder and organiser, Chef Peter Knipp of Peter Knipp Holdings said, “While US Cheese is a relative newcomer to Asia, its culinary potential shines bright in both Western and Asian style cuisines, offering versatility from fine-dining gourmet menus to more casual comfort dishes.”
In 2018, US dairy exports in Southeast Asia comprised mainly of milk powder with 235,503 tonnes followed by whey ingredients (110,209 tonnes), lactose (76,123 tonnes) and cheese (19,000 tonnes).



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