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Momentum Continues for Red Meat Exports

Momentum Continues for Red Meat Exports

7/11/2017 3:11:00 PM/Categories: Popular Posts, Livestock, Livestock Markets, Cattle, National News, International

U.S. beef and pork exports had a strong month of May, increasing significantly from April as well as from 2016 levels. 

USDA statistics compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation show May beef exports were six percent higher than last year, coming in at 105,321 metric tons. The retail value was nine percent higher at just over $582 million dollars. From January through May, beef exports were 12 percent higher in volume and up 16 percent in value compared to 2016. Beef exports accounted for 13 percent of total U.S. beef production.

Exports accounted for 13 percent of total U.S. beef production in May and 10 percent for muscle cuts only – each down one percentage point from a year ago. Through May, these ratios were steady with last year’s pace – 12.8 percent for total production and 10 percent for muscle cuts. Export value per head of fed slaughter averaged $265.55 in May, matching the average from a year ago. Through May, per-head export value averaged $270.27, up 8 percent. Beef export prices are also increasing, especially in key Asian markets, with double-digit increases in Japan and Korea in May illustrating the strong demand for U.S. beef.

May was a particularly strong month for variety meat exports, with pork variety meat volume climbing 16 percent to 47,766 mt (a record high for May), and value up 33 percent to $102.7 million. Beef variety meat exports reached 2017 highs in both volume (30,173 mt, up 12 percent) and value ($77.7 million, up 10 percent).

“2017 is shaping up as a very solid year for U.S. pork and beef exports, but we remain in an extremely competitive situation in each of our key markets,” said Philip Seng, USMEF president and CEO. “That’s why it is so important to capitalize on every opportunity to increase carcass value, and this is where variety meat plays an important role. USMEF has been working with our industry partners to expand the range of variety meat product offerings and diversify their destinations, and those efforts are paying important dividends for producers.”

Pork exports reached more than 222,000 metric tons. That’s an 11 percent year-over-year increase and the fourth largest monthly volume on record. Pork exports were valued at more than $583 million, up 16 percent. From January through May, exports were 14 percent higher than last year and 18 percent higher in value. Even with higher pork production, exports accounted for a larger share in 2017. May pork exports accounted for 29.4 percent of total production. 

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Picture: Drovers

USMEF and NAFB

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