March lamb exports well above five-year average

05 April 2016


Australian lamb exports in March eased 4% year-on-year, to 22,588 tonnes swt – but were 30% above the five-year average for the month (Department of Agriculture and Water Resources).

This brought the March quarter total to 62,304 tonnes swt – up 6% on the corresponding period last year and 31% on the five-year average. The proportion of chilled and frozen shipments for the March quarter was similar to last year, at 43% chilled and 57% frozen, although there has been a considerable shift since 2011, when the proportion was 36% chilled and 64% frozen.

For the first three months of 2016, compared to last year, volumes of:

  • Whole carcases were steady, at 11,435 tonnes swt
  • Breast and flaps increased 4%, to 11,631 tonnes swt
  • Legs were steady, at 9,488 tonnes swt
  • Shoulders increased 2%, to 9,220 tonnes swt
  • Manufacturing increased 8% to 4,012 tonnes swt

The major export destinations for Australian lamb in the March quarter were:

  • The Middle East – 15,786 tonnes swt, down 2% year-on-year
  • The US – 15,322 tonnes swt, up 25%
  • China – 9,354 tonnes swt, up 7%
  • Papua New Guinea – 3,687 tonnes swt, steady
  • South East Asia – 3,372 tonnes swt, up 1%
  • EU – 2,842 tonnes swt, down 6%
  • Japan – 2,551 tonnes swt, up 10%

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