USDA report on Direct versus Indirect Trade

Romania’s hidden market for US agri exports

The U.S. Census Bureau's bulk, intermediate, and consumer-oriented (BICO) export data tracks U.S. food and agricultural trade shipped directly to Poland. However, it does not measure the substantial levels of the U.S. agricultural trade to Poland routed through Western European ports of entry.

According to BICO, U.S. suppliers shipped $164 million of U.S. food and agriculture to Poland in 2020. However, according to Poland’s Central Statistical Office (CSO), which measures trade by country of origin and therefore reflects both direct and indirect trade, Poland sourced upwards of $506 million of U.S. food and agriculture in 2020. FAS Warsaw encourages USDA cooperators and other U.S. food and agricultural exporters and stakeholders to look beyond BICO data and review different data sources when considering resource allocation and market development strategies for Poland.

The United States is Poland’s 17th largest supplier of food and agriculture. U.S. goods flow into Poland either directly from the United States or are transshipped through the other European Union (EU) ports of entry mainly in the Netherlands and Germany.  Because BICO data only reflects direct U.S. trade to Poland, it does not reflect significant volumes of U.S. trade routed through distributors in Rotterdam, Bremerhaven, and other large Western European port cities. As a result, Post views Poland’s CSO data, which includes both direct and indirect trade, as a more accurate reflection of Polish demand for U.S. food and agriculture.

According to CSO data, Polish importers sourced $506 million worth of U.S. food and agricultural products in 2020.

Chilled potatoes, sweet potatoes and tree nuts
For fresh or chilled potatoes, BICO indicates no U.S. trade with Romania, while NIS reflects $869,000 of U.S. trade. In case of sweet potato, BICO data shows U.S. trade was valued at $543,000 in 2020, while NIS data reflects that U.S. sweet potato exports were valued at nearly $1.2 million. U.S.  potatoes and sweet potatoes were shipped to Romania through Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands.

For tree nuts (fresh or dried), BICO data captured $1.8 million, while NIS data show $6.7 million of U.S. tree nut imports. Most U.S. tree nuts, such as almonds and pistachios, are shipped to Romania through Germany.

Click here to read the full report.

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