Chicken soup exports grew for first time in 4 years

Chicken soup exports grew for first time in 4 years

Korean traditional ginseng chicken soup — samgyetang — showed positive growth for the first time in four years in 2015, according to data from a local trade association Monday.

Outbound shipments of samgyetang stood at 2,196 tons worth $9.85 million in 2015, up 27.8 percent from a year ago, said the Korea International Trade Association.

Overseas samgyetang sales peaked at 2,888 tons in 2011 before steadily decreasing from 2012 to 2014 due to slipping sales in Japan, the biggest export market, the organization said.

An expected rise in demand from the 14 million Asian consumers in the United States, however, is likely to offset this downturn, it added.

South Korea first exported the dish to the U.S. in August 2014 after a decade of efforts to enter one of the world’s biggest poultry export markets.

Meanwhile, overseas shipments of samgyetang are expected to further gain momentum as a free trade agreement with China, South Korea’s largest trading partner, took effect in December to lower tariffs and other trade barriers.

The two nations have agreed to set customs measures to allow the South’s exports of ginseng chicken soup to Beijing.

Samgyetang is considered to be one of the healthiest dishes as it contains Korean ginseng. Usually served piping hot, it is a favorite summertime dish for many Koreans who believe in the principle of fighting heat with heat.

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