Wed, 09 Aug 2017
US - US pork and beef exports continued to trend above year-ago levels in June, capping a very strong first half of the year.
According to statistics released by USDA and compiled by USMEF, exports also achieved higher values on a per-head-slaughtered basis and accounted for a steady-to-higher percentage of total production.
Pork exports totaled 200,229 mt in June, up 6 per cent year-over-year and the largest June volume on record, valued at $527.1 million, up 4 per cent. This pushed the first-half total to 1.25 million mt valued at $3.21 billion – up 13 per cent and 16 per cent, respectively.
Exports accounted for 27 per cent of total pork production (up more than one percentage point from a year ago) in June and 22 per cent for muscle cuts only (steady with last year). For the first half, with production at a record pace, both ratios increased significantly from a year ago. The percentage of total production jumped from 25.3 per cent to 27.8 per cent, and for muscle cuts the increase was from 21.4 per cent to 23 per cent. Export value per head slaughtered in June was up 1 per cent to $53.41 and the first-half average increased 12 per cent to $54.09.
"In this time of large red meat production, the upward trend in per-head export value and in the percentage of production exported is especially critical to the industry," said USMEF President and CEO Philip Seng.
"These metrics confirm that we’re not simply exporting more red meat because more is available – those exports are also generating excellent returns. It was also gratifying to see that the US trade deficit narrowed in June due to an expansion of exports, knowing that the red meat industry made another solid contribution toward that effort."
Pork exports to leading volume market Mexico remained on a record pace in June, increasing 19 per cent year-over-year in both volume (64,712 mt) and value ($124.9 million). This pushed the first-half total to 398,565 mt (up 23 per cent) valued at $731.6 million (up 29 per cent). A major factor behind this increase is that Mexican consumers are eating significantly more pork, both imported and domestic. Over the past 10 years, Mexico’s annual per-capita pork consumption has increased by about one third, and is expected to reach 18 kilograms this year (carcass weight equivalent), based on USDA estimates. Over the same period, Mexico’s pork production has increased by 30 per cent.
Other first-half highlights for US pork exports included: