NZ beef exports lower in March

03 May 2016

New Zealand (NZ) beef exports in March decreased 25% on year-ago volumes, at 42,109 tonnes swt (Statistics NZ).

For the season-to-date (October to March), compared to the same time last year, NZ beef exports reached 209,301 tonnes swt – down 4% year-on-year. Shipments to:

  • the US declined 18%, to 99,639 tonnes swt
  • China increased 67%, to 39,232 tonnes swt
  • South East Asia declined 1%, to 12,193 tonnes swt
  • Taiwan increased 22%, to 12,083 tonnes swt
  • Canada increased 40%, to 11,388 tonnes swt

AgriHQ report that imported beef prices to the US have increased over the last couple of weeks, on the back of tighter supplies from NZ and Australia. Furthermore, unseasonably cold weather in the US has dampened retail demand for beef, and cheaper proteins (pork and poultry) continue to pressure end user demand for lean grinding beef.

Demand from China continues to strengthen, with shipments considerably higher year-on-year for the season-to-date. While exporters report solid enquiry for product, AgriHQ suggest that lower NZ beef production over the coming months may challenge their ability to fill orders.

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