US Beef Imports To Japan Up 37 Per Cent

US and JAPAN - Japan imported 43,795 tonnes swt of beef in October, up 31 per cent from the low volumes registered last year (data by the Ministry of Finance, Japan), reports Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA).
calendar icon 1 December 2011
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Meat & Livestock Australia

MLA states imports from the US increased 37 per cent year-on-year to 10,131 tonnes, with the 10 months to October total at 98,573 tonnes, up 40 per cent from the same time last year (and 44 per cent of the pre-BSE level in 2003).

The weak US$ against the Japanese yen, particularly assisted their chilled beef business, with the US accounting for 31 per cent of total chilled imports during the month (up eight percentage points from a year ago), at 5,406 tonnes. As a result, Australia’s share in the imported chilled beef market fell eight percentage points from last year to 63 per cent, or 10,898 tonnes.

Broken down by storage and cut category, the average price of US beef was extremely competitive against Australian offerings during the month, despite the US age limitation protocols and its grainfed orientation. The US chilled and frozen loins averaged lower than Australian, while ‘frozen briskets’ average prices were very close.

The US and Japanese governments have initiated a process in mid-November to review the current import protocols of US beef into Japan.

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