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US posts another $1-billion month for beef exports

10 June 2022

Pork exports remain below last year's figures

US beef exports maintained a remarkable pace in April, topping $1 billion for the third time this year, according to data released by USDA and compiled by the US Meat Export Federation (USMEF). April pork exports were well below the large totals posted a year ago, while lamb exports continued to trend higher.

Record exports to Taiwan highlight huge month for beef exports

Beef exports totalled 124,408 metric tons (mt) in April, up 3% from a year ago and the fifth largest on record, while export value soared 33% to $1.05 billion – second only to the record $1.07 billion posted in March. April exports to Taiwan and the Philippines were record-large and exports increased to Japan, China/Hong Kong, Indonesia, the Middle East and the Caribbean. For January through April, beef exports increased 5% from a year ago to 478,260 mt, valued at $4.05 billion (up 38%). For South Korea, the leading value destination for US beef, export value already topped $1 billion, increasing nearly 50% from a year ago.

"Global demand for US beef continues to overcome enormous obstacles, from inflationary pressure to logistical challenges to the recent lockdowns in some of China’s major metropolitan areas,” said USMEF president and CEO Dan Halstrom. "Most encouraging is that even as beef exports climb to unprecedented levels in our largest Asian markets, demand is strengthening in other regions as well, fuelled by a strong rebound in the foodservice sector."

Halstrom cautioned that April results did not capture the full impact of recent COVID-19 lockdowns in China, some of which continued through May and into early June. The pressure inflation imposes on consumers’ discretionary income and the rising strength of the US dollar versus some key trading partner currencies are also growing headwinds for US red meat exports.

Pork exports regain momentum in Japan, set new record to Dominican Republic

April pork exports were 212,876 mt, down 21% from the large volume reported a year ago. Export value was $600.6 million, down 20%. Exports to leading market Mexico remained strong in April and are running well ahead of last year’s record pace. April exports also increased to Japan, Honduras and Colombia and exports to the Dominican Republic reached a new record. Through April, pork exports fell 20% from a year ago to 842,804 mt, valued at $2.31 billion (down 18%).

"The sharp decline in China’s demand for imported pork continues to weigh heavily on the year-over-year results for US exports, and the COVID lockdowns dampened demand even further by limiting consumer spending and slowing activity in the wholesale market and the meat processing sector,” Halstrom explained. "We do expect exports to China to regain some momentum in the fourth quarter of this year – certainly not back to the peak volumes of 2020, but improving over current levels. Meanwhile shipments to Mexico remain on a record pace and exports to Japan and several Latin American markets trended higher in April."

TheCattleSite News Desk



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