South Korea Agribusiness Report

Providing expert analysis, independent forecasts and competitive intelligence on the agribusiness industry.

Report includes: BMI Industry View, Industry SWOT Analysis, Industry Forecasts, Supply & Demand Forecasts, Commodity Price Analysis and Company Profiles.

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South Korea Agribusiness Report
Product Price

BMI View: The South Korean agricultural sector holds a modestly subdued outlook over our forecast period . The livestock industry has been plagued with various disease outbreaks in the past that have largely been contained since . Government-led efforts will benefit the industry over the longer term and help it to remain relevant. These include the expansion of education and financial support for farmers to allow them entry into the food processing business; plans to modernise traditional methods of food production; the creation of new agricultural food districts for exporters; and the introduction of state designation of food exporting companies.

Key Forecasts

  • Cheese consumption growth to 2020: 22.8% to 153,500 tonnes. As Western food has become more popular in Korea, demand for cheese has expanded rapidly. The majority of cheese is consumed in restaurants and fast food outlets, and comes in the form of processed cheese. Exporters with the lowest prices, such as the US, have gained market share in supplying the South Korean cheese industry.

  • Poultry meat production growth to 2019/20: 29.1% to 1.07mn tonnes. Poultry production will record relatively strong growth driven by increased export opportunities as the country recovers from several outbreaks of avian influenza in 2013-2015

  • Rice consumption growth to 2020: 2.8% to 4.5mn tonnes. As South Koreans substitute their carbohydrate intake with bread instead of rice, consumption of the grain is expected to post only weak growth.

  • BMI universe agribusiness market value: USD33.65bn in 2016 (up 1.1% compared with 2015, growth forecast to average 2.5% annually between 2016 and 2020).

  • 2016 real GDP growth: 2.8% (up from 2.6% in 2015, forecast to average 3.2% between 2016 and 2020).

  • 2016 consumer price inflation: 1.6% y-o-y ave (up from 0.7% in 2015, forecast to average 2.1% between 2016 and 2020).

  • 2016 c entral bank p olicy r ate: 1.25% y-o-y ave (down from 1.50% in 2015, forecast to average 1.75% between 2016 and 2020).

Latest Updates & Structural Trends

Production in the dairy sector will remain subdued in 2015/16 as farmers struggle with elevated production costs and stagnating raw milk prices. The price of raw fluid milk has been stagnating since 2013, with planned price increases being postponed. Manufacturers are facing increasing competition from imports. Dairy consumption - including cheese, whole milk powder and fluid milk - will continue to grow at a faster pace than production in 2016. Cheese consumption will be particularly strong in 2016, growing by 5.0% to 131,000 tonnes, whereas domestic production will remain unchanged at around 24,000 tonnes.

While South Korea remains a net importer of dairy products, its exports have been growing. South Korean dairy companies are especially eying the Chinese market, where its products enjoy a good reputation. South Korea is the ninth largest exporter of milk powder to China. Maeil Dairies Industry, South Korea's largest dairy firm, launched an Asian infant formula research centre in China in November 2015 and plans to form a joint venture with China's Beingmate Baby & Child Food to develop lactose-free dried milk. The second largest Korean player Namyang Dairy Product, which entered the Chinese market in 2008, has stepped up efforts to expand its sales channel through online marketing and a partnership with local distributors.

Poultry exports have been growing with the rise in domestic supply. Exports will remain on a slow uptrend, helped in 2016 by the re-opening of the Hong Kong market. Hong Kong halted imports of South Korean poultry meat in May 2014 following an outbreak of avian influenza, but has now allowed imports to resume as South Korea regained its bird flu-free status in February 2016.

BMI Industry View
Industry Forecast
Rice Outlook
Table: South Korea - Rice Production & Consumption Outlook
Table: Risks To Outlook
Table: Rice Production & Consumption (South Korea 2013-2020)
Grains Outlook
Table: South Korea - Grains Production & Consumption Outlook
Table: Risks To Outlook
Table: Grains Production & Consumption (South Korea 2013-2020)
Livestock Outlook
Table: South Korea - Livestock Production & Consumption Outlook
Table: Risks To Outlook
Table: Livestock Production & Consumption (South Korea 2013-2020)
Dairy Outlook
Table: South Korea Dairy Production & Consumption Outlook
Table: Risks to Outlook
Table: Dairy Production & Consumption (South Korea 2013-2020)
Commodities Forecast
Global Commodities Strategy
Table: Select Commodities - Performance And BMI Forecasts
Upstream Analysis
Asia GM Outlook
Table: Selected Countries - GM Crops Use (mn hectares)
Asia Machinery Outlook
Table: Select Countries - Average Size Of Farms, Hectares
Asia Fertiliser Outlook
Downstream Analysis
Latest Updates
Structural Trends
Table: Food Consumption Indicators - Historical Data & Forecasts (South Korea 2012-2019)
Table: Confectionery Value/Volume Sales, Production & Trade - Historical Data & Forecasts (South Korea 2012-2019)
Table: Meat Volume Sales, Production & Trade - Historical Data & Forecast (South Korea 2014-2019)
Table: Preserved Fish (Other) Volume Sales, Production & Trade - Historical Data & Forecast (South Korea 2012-2019)
Table: Oils and Fats Volume Sales, Production & Trade - Historical Data & Forecast (South Korea 2012-2019)
Table: Dairy Volume Sales, Production & Trade - Historical Data & Forecast (South Korea 2012-2019)
Regional Overview
Table: Impact Of El Ni-o On Crops
Demographic Forecast
Demographic Outlook
Table: Population Headline Indicators (South Korea 1990-2025)
Table: Key Population Ratios (South Korea 1990-2025)
Table: Urban/Rural Population & Life Expectancy (South Korea 1990-2025)
Table: Population By Age Group (South Korea 1990-2025)
Table: Population By Age Group % (South Korea 1990-2025)
Industry Forecast Methodology
Sector-Specific Methodology

The South Korea Agribusiness Report features BMI Research's market assessment and independent forecasts for production, consumption and trade across core agricultural commodities.

BMI's South Korea Agribusiness Report includes independent commodity price forecasting and analysis for key agricultural outputs, an overview of the agribusiness competitive landscape and a discussion of the downstream context of agricultural production in relation to country food consumption forecasts and composite food and beverage trade forecasts.

Key Benefits

  • Use BMI's independent industry forecasts to test other views - a key input for successful planning in dynamic agribusiness markets.
  • Apply BMI's medium-term commodity price analysis to assist with budgetary planning and the identification of investment opportunities and potential risks.
  • Assess the activities and market position of your competitors, partners and clients.


BMI Industry View

Summary of BMI’s key industry forecasts and views, highlighting recent changes and key risks to the industry outlook.

Industry SWOT Analysis

Analysis of the major strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats within the wider agricultural industry.

BMI Supply & Demand Forecasts

Divided into sections based on various diverse sectors in the agriculture market, the chapter provides insight into each market’s agricultural industry, centred on sector forecasts to end-2019 for the consumption, production and trade of key commodities.

  • Consumption Forecasts: Accompanied by a discussion of the main drivers of consumption growth: macroeconomic factors, food processing trends, price movements and increasingly, demand from the non-food sector.
  • Production Forecasts: Examine the trends influencing BMI’s production outlook: global demand, price increases, public and private sector investment and agricultural efficiency improvements.
  • Trade Forecasts: Accompanied by a discussion of the factors influencing a country’s trade in agricultural goods, including domestic demand, global prices and government trade policies.
  • BMI’s Forecasts: Accompanied by a risks-to-outlook assessment, which examines potential factors that could affect our existing forecast picture and the likelihood of their occurrence.

BMI’s Commodity Price Analysis

Fundamental and technical analysis of the short- and medium-term price outlook for eight agricultural commodities based on globally recognised benchmarks.

Downstream Analysis

Analysis of headline food and drink forecasts, including total food consumption, per capita food consumption and total sector trade, which provide important downstream intelligence for primary agricultural producers.

Featured Analysis

Includes relevant articles from BMI’s daily analysis service. These can include: long-term projections on agricultural imports and exports; our perceptions of the impacts of economic slowdown on key companies and subsectors within the Agribusiness industry in a given country; our analysis of fertilizer production; as well as other relevant analysis of recent news and events.

Competitive Landscape

The reports contain information on prominent companies operating in each market.

Key Commodities Covered By The Agribusiness Market

Reports Include: Grains, Dairy, Livestock, Rice, Sugar, Palm Oil, Edible Oils, Coffee, Cocoa, Cotton, Soybean

Please note – not all reports cover all commodities.


The Agribusiness reports draw on an extensive network of primary sources, such as multilateral organisations, government departments, industry associations, chambers and company reports.