Australian beef exports predicted to rise

By Aidan Fortune

- Last updated on GMT

Analysts have predicted Australian beef export will grow by 9%
Analysts have predicted Australian beef export will grow by 9%

Related tags: Beef

Growing production, weak currency and rising demand has led to analysts predicting a 9% increase in Australian beef exports in 2018.

According to the latest Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) Industry Projections, “increased beef production, a softer Australian dollar and robust demand fundamentals, particularly in established Asian markets, has underpinned a 9% increase in forecast beef exports in 2018 to 1.1 million tonnes shipped weight (swt)”.

It said that despite increasing competition, beef exports for the calendar year-to-September grew 12% year-on-year, to 840,500 tonnes swt.

Exports to Japan and Korea have recorded increases of 7% and 15% respectively while exports to China in the first nine months of 2018 grew 55% year-on-year.

Shipments to the US were slightly down, heavily impacted by increasing domestic production while South East Asia has also seen strong growth, led by Indonesia and the Philippines, as the region becomes a more established destination for secondary cuts and manufacturing beef.

MLA reported that the US remains Australia's primary competitor and has been challenging market share in Japan and Korea. US beef production is forecast to rise a further 4% in 2019, on top of 3% growth in 2018, according to the USDA World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates.

The report also highlighted the growth in Australian exports to China, with data from top suppliers reporting a 50% year-on-year growth during the first eight months of 2018.

It said: “In the space of six years, China has transformed from a minor buyer of beef to a global importing powerhouse – second only to the US imported beef market. In terms of global intercontinental trade, many trade flows have pivoted towards China with it now being the single largest export market for beef from Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay, and a major buyer of product from New Zealand and Australian.”

The analysis also stated that beef production is forecast to finish 6% up on last year, at 2.3 million tonnes carcase weight (cwt), driven by a 9% increase in slaughter.

Related topics: Markets, Oceania, Industry growth, Meat

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