November 9, 2016
US beef, pork, lamb exports on upswing in Sept.
September was another solid month for US red meat exports, with pork, beef and lamb totals well above year-ago levels, according to statistics released by USDA and compiled by the US Meat Export Federation (USMEF).
September beef export volume was 101,224 metric tonnes–down slightly from August, but 27% above September 2015.
Third-quarter volume was 307,383 metric tonnes, the largest since the fourth quarter of 2014.
For the nine-month period January-September, export volume was 8% above last year's pace at 848,930 metric tonnes. September export value was up 17% from a year ago to $533.3 million. For the first three quarters, export value was down 5% from a year ago to $4.54 billion.
Beef exports accounted for 13.5% of total beef production in September.
January-September ratios were also 13.5%, up slightly from a year ago. Export value per head of fed slaughter averaged $256.98 in September, the first year-on-year increase (up 10%) of 2016. Through September, export value averaged $253 per head, down 10% from last year.
September pork export volume was 183,936 metric tonnes, also down slightly from August but up 7% from a year ago.
For January through September, export volume was 5% above last year's pace at 1.66 million metric tonnes. September export value was up 8% from a year ago to $491 million, while January-September export value was $4.27 billion, up 1% from the same period last year.
Exports accounted for 24% of total pork production in September. January-September ratios were 25%, up slightly from last year, mainly reflecting growth in variety meat exports to China/Hong Kong. Export value per head slaughtered averaged $48.29 in September, up 3% year-on-year. January-September export value was down slightly, averaging $49.24.
"Red meat exports continued to build positive momentum in September, and it couldn't come at a better time", said Philip Seng, USMEF president and CEO. "We have large supplies of pork and beef hitting the market and moving these higher volumes is certainly a challenge. But this is also presenting expanded opportunities in the international markets, as we are able to introduce new cuts and value-added products, and recapture market share from our key competitors".
September exports of US lamb totaled 740 metric tonnes, up 19% from last year's low volume, while export value was $1.68 million, up 26% from a year ago and matching the highest monthly value of 2016. Exports to leading market Mexico edged higher in September. It was also a strong month for exports to the Bahamas, Canada and the Philippines.
During the first nine months, lamb exports were 3% below last year's in volume (6,520 metric tonnes) and down 7% in value ($13.4 million).