Mon, 09 Oct 2017
US - August pork exports increased from the previous month but were down slightly year-over-year.
Pork exports totaled 183,658 mt in August, down 2 per cent year-over-year, valued at $511.4 million, down 0.3 per cent. January-August volume remained 9 per cent above last year’s record pace at 1.61 million mt, while export value increased 11 per cent to $4.21 billion.
Exports accounted for 23.1 per cent of total pork production in August (down from 24.1 per cent a year ago) and 19.2 per cent for muscle cuts only (down from 20 per cent). For the first eight months of the year, the percentage of total production exported was 26.9 per cent (up from 25.4 per cent last year). For pork muscle cuts only, the percentage exported was 22.4 per cent (up from 21.3 per cent). Export value per head slaughtered trended lower in August at $47.98, down 3 per cent from a year ago, but the January-August average was still up 8 per cent to $53.28.
"As we head into the final quarter, 2017 is shaping up as a very solid year for red meat exports but one in which the US industry still faces significant challenges," said USMEF CEO Philip Seng. "We have new pork plants coming on line and strong cattle-on-feed numbers, which sends a positive signal to our international customers about product availability. But the international markets are increasingly competitive, so we must continue to aggressively pursue new opportunities for US red meat products in both our traditional mainstay destinations and in emerging markets."
Pork exports to Mexico remained on pace for a sixth consecutive volume record in August, with volume up slightly from a year ago to 65,037 mt. Export value also increased slightly to $129.6 million. Through August, exports increased 18 per cent in volume (522,227 mt) and 22 per cent in value ($984.1 million).
Exports to Japan, the leading value market for US pork, declined in August as volume dipped 9 per cent to 31,863 mt and value was down 7 per cent to $140 million. Through August, exports to Japan remained modestly higher year-over-year in both volume (260,352 mt, up 1 per cent) and value ($1.07 billion, up 4 per cent). August chilled pork exports to Japan were the largest since March, though January-August volume (142,927 mt) was still down 3 per cent from last year’s record pace. Chilled export value through August was $674.2 million, up 3 per cent from a year ago. The US competes primarily with Canadian pork in Japan’s high-value chilled pork market.
Other January-August highlights for US pork exports included: