Thanks to educational efforts by the North American Renderers Association (NARA), the U.S. enjoyed a 100 percent market share in Ecuador’s animal protein market in 2021. Most of the animal protein meals from the United States are used in aquaculture and pet foods. Using funds from FAS’s Market Access Program and Foreign Market Development program, NARA provided technical assistance and trade servicing to help quality control personnel at feed manufacturing companies detect adulteration in animal protein meals, including fish meal. NARA representatives connected with shrimp producers in Latin America through virtual seminars and hybrid workshops, with one workshop in Mexico drawing more than 1,000 shrimp producer participants.
This training allows NARA to differentiate U.S. product from the competition and demonstrate the higher quality and performance of U.S. products compared to animal proteins from other countries. NARA promotes the use of U.S. animal protein meals as a replacement of fishmeal in aquafeeds. In 2021, Ecuador imported a record 40,000 metric tons of U.S. animal proteins, valued at $35 million, an increase of 33 percent in volume and 75 percent in value for the industry.
In 2021, Ecuador became the first country in the world to product 1 million metric tons of shrimp. The country’s shrimp exports reached $4.6 billion, which was a 34 percent increase over 2020 exports.
NARA’s outreach program emphasizes the sustainability of rendered products. The rendering industry “recycles” unwanted meat into new, clean ingredients for animal feed and fertilizer. Rendering also fights climate change, sequestering five times more greenhouse gases than those produced by animal agriculture. In addition, 3.7 billion gallons of water are reclaimed during rendering, then cleaned and returned to rivers and streams.