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CME: Beef, Veal Exports Track Below Year Ago Levels

10 December 2019

US - USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) released the October meat trade data on 6 December 2019. Beef and veal exports have been tracking below year ago levels for each month this year, according to Steiner Consulting Group, DLR Division, Inc.

Through October beef exports totaled 2.5 billion pounds which is 4.2 percent below last year (2.6 billion pounds). The decline in shipments are mainly due to Hong Kong, Canada, and Mexico, each down 27.5 percent, 11.3 percent and 10.6 percent, respectively, year-to-date.

Shipments to China (up 37.2 percent), Taiwan (up 7.8 percent), South Korea (up 7.4 percent), and Vietnam (up 6.7 percent) are higher through October which is helping support exports.

It is also important to keep in mind that 2017 and 2018 total beef export volumes were consecutive records at 2.9 and 3.2 billion pounds, respectively. So although exports are down year-to-date shipments are still strong indicating foreign demand is robust.

Beef and veal imports, year-to-date, have been similar to last year at 2.6 billion pounds up less than one percent (0.7 percent). For October, beef imports were 241 million pounds which is 2.7 percent higher than the same month last year, but going into the fourth quarter imports typically tail-off.

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