Limited trading on US imported beef market

29 September 2016

US imported beef prices were firm to weaker this week, and trading was relatively light as many market participants attended the annual Meat Importers Council of America (MICA) conference, according to the Steiner Consulting Group’s weekly report commissioned by MLA.

While supplies from New Zealand are still seasonally tight, offerings are expected to start increasing over the next few weeks with the start of the 2016-17 production season. However, according to Steiner, New Zealand market participants expect slaughter levels to rise at a slower pace than last year due to improved pasture growth, a smaller herd and stronger dairy returns. Steiner reports that, at present, domestic US beef availability is providing an adequate buffer against the considerable shortages of imported beef.

Last week, the USDA released cold storage survey results for August. The Steiner Consulting Group’s Daily Livestock Report highlighted that, while boneless beef stocks typically decrease in August and September, this year stocks are moving higher. Frozen boneless beef stocks in August were up 2% both month-on-month and year-on-year.  

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