Mixed Outlook for Aussie Beef Exports

AUSTRALIA - Australian beef and veal exports for 2012-13 are forecast to increase one per cent year-on-year, to 955,000 tonnes swt, facilitated by rising production and increased demand from the US and emerging markets – according to ABARES’ Agricultural commodities, September quarter 2012.
calendar icon 20 September 2012
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Meat & Livestock Australia

Australian beef exports to the US in 2012-13 are forecast to increase five per cent year-on-year, to 215,000 tonnes swt, assisted by tighter US beef supplies and rising demand for imported beef. Over the same period, shipments to emerging markets are forecast to jump three per cent, to 313,000 tonnes swt, with exporters looking towards other markets to offset some of the slower conditions in North Asia.

Exports to both Japan and Korea are expected to face tough conditions again in 2012-13, accentuated by the strong A$ and increased competition from the US. Japan is forecast to receive three per cent less Australian beef in 2012-13, at 315,000 tonnes swt, with demand for high valued chilled cuts under significant price pressure from US beef. Reflecting the tough market conditions, demand for lower priced frozen Australian beef is expected to be maintained.

Australian beef exports to Korea in 2012-13 are forecast to decline nine per cent year-on-year, to 112,000 tonnes swt. US beef is expected to increase its imported market share again in 2012-13, assisted by the weak US currency and lower tariff rate.

On the supply side of the equation, Australian herd growth is expected to slow on the back of two very wet seasons, underpinned by reduced demand for restocker cattle. Herd growth in 2011-12 was estimated at five per cent and is forecast to slow to two per cent in 2012-13, taking the Australian herd to 30.5 million head.

Australian cattle slaughter in 2012-13 is forecast to increase three per cent year-on-year, largely the result of two years of herd rebuilding and an increase of market–ready cattle throughout the first half of 2012.

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